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December 7, 1999

Governor Announces Grant For Tunnel Noise Barrier On CTA Green Line

CHICAGO -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced a $9 million Illinois FIRST grant for construction of a sound insulation tunnel surrounding the Chicago Transit Authority Green Line where it runs above the new McCormick Tribune Campus Center at the Illinois Institute of Technology.

The noise barrier tunnel is part of a major renovation plan for the IIT campus that includes construction of a new campus center adjacent to both sides and underneath the Green Line.

"I am proud the state is able to play a part in this unique project," Ryan said. "This tunnel is an excellent example of the cooperative efforts between the public and private sector that will help improve the community and help advance one of Chicago's educational giants."

The renovation of the IIT campus is part of a "Main Campus Master Plan" that began in 1995.

"IIT's commitment to its neighborhood goes deep," said Lew Collens, IIT president. "The campus center will be a symbol of rebirth and renewal not just for IIT, but for the surrounding community as well."

The $35 million McCormick Tribune Campus Center is named in recognition of the MCCormick Tribune Foundation, which has donated millions of dollars to IIT. The center has been designed by world-renowned architect, Rem Koolhaas, from Rotterdam, Netherlands, who won the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation International Design Competition.

The building, along with the noise tunnel, is scheduled to be completed in 2001.

"The urban setting of the IIT campus presents a unique challenge for creating and protecting an environment while meeting the practical needs for a functional facility without creating any interruptions to the CTA schedule," Ryan said. "I commend the IIT Board and the CTA for working together to come up with this innovative plan."

The $9 million noise tunnel project includes replacing existing CTA steel column supports with longer-lasting, vibration-reducing concrete columns, and other acoustic measures in the building itself.


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