Eventually, the outer two of four tracks were removed and the platforms widened to reach the inside two. (Photo from the William H. Flagg/Bruce G. Moffat Collection)

Laramie (5200W/600S)
Laramie Avenue and Harrison Street, Austin

Service Notes:

Garfield Line

Quick Facts:

Address: TBD
Established: August 17, 1902
Original Line: Metropolitan West Side Elevated, Garfield Park branch
Previous Names: 52nd Avenue Terminal

Skip-Stop Type:

Station

Rebuilt: n/a
Status: Demolished

History:

From 1902 to 1905, AE&C trains ended their eastbound runs at 52nd. This two car AE&C has already discharged it passengers, changed ends and is pulling into the westbound platform to pick up connecting "L" passengers. For a larger view, click here. (Photo from the Shore Line Interurban Historical Society)

In June 1900, the Chicago City Council authorized an extension of the Garfield Park branch of the Metropolitan Elevated Railroad to 52nd from 48th (Cicero) Avenue. Work was delayed when a land owner refused to sell his parcel, which unfortunately was across the street from the 48th Avenue terminal. Eventually, he sold and work progressed.

In mid-July, 1902, it was reported that occasional service was being run to 52nd Avenue, with regular service to the station was inaugurated August 25, 1902. At the same time, the Aurora, Elgin & Chicago interurban began service from this station west, providing a connection for "L" passengers. The new terminal included a turning loop and four-track inspection shop to replace the one at 46th. This station served as the terminal for the Garfield Park branch until the line was extended to Desplaines Avenue. AE&C trains still had to terminate here until February 23, 1905, when the city altered their franchise agreement to allow them to operate into the Wells terminal downtown. At that time, the CA&E discontinued stopping at Laramie.

On August 1, 1927, Insull group (who owned the Rapid Transit Company by that time) obtained control of the CA&E. After successfully adding a stop at Canal for interurban trains so west suburban passengers could connect with Union Station, a stop at Laramie was added beginning in 1928.1

On December 9, 1951, the Chicago Aurora & Elgin discontinued stopping at Laramie and began stopping at Cicero concurrent with their resumption of local service to stations in Maywood and Bellwood.

The station was closed in 1958 when the entire Garfield Park branch was closed to make was for the Eisenhower Expressway and the new Congress Line therein, and demolished thereafter. A new Laramie station was never constructed.

This view from the opposite end the station shows an "L" train turning on the loop track. (Photo from the Fred D. Lonnes Collection)

 


cta5001c.jpg (114k)
The first of the four experimental, articulated 5000-series units, car 5001, is shown westbound on the Garfield Park line using the local track at Laramie in 1948. The cars, as delivered, had a unique look, with red and gray paint around the windows as the only adornment of the raw aluminum finish of the rest of the car. The protected trolley poles wouldn't be needed until the cars entered Evanston service in the 1950s. (Photo from the Chicago Transit Authority Collection)

 

Notes:

1. Plachno, Larry. The Story of the Chicago Aurora & Elgin Railroad 2 -- History. Transportation Trails, 1989, p. 313.