Racine (1200W/400S)
Racine Avenue and Van Buren Street, Near West Side

Service Notes:

Garfield Line/Douglas Line

Quick Facts:

Address: 416-18 S. Racine Avenue
Established: May 6, 1895
Original Line: Metropolitan West Side Elevated
Previous Names: Center Avenue

Skip-Stop Type:

Station (1951-1953)

Station (1953-1954)

Rebuilt: n/a
Status: Demolished


The Racine station was opened in 1895 when the Metropolitan "L" first opened. It was located on the four-track Metropolitan main line, on which all three branches of the Met -- the Northwest branch, Garfield Park branch, and Douglas Park branch -- entered downtown Chicago.

Racine station had a somewhat unusual configuration. The station consisted of a station house at street level and four side platforms at track level, allowing trains on all four track to call at the station. The station was located a block east of the Metropolitan Division's Throop Street Shops, their main maintenance facility, which was located between the tracks. Because the tracks split to go around the shop, a platform was provided for each track, since they were not all adjacent at Racine Avenue.

In 1951, trains to and from Logan Square (later extended to Jefferson Park in 1970, then to O'Hare in 1984) were rerouted from their Milwaukee-Paulina alignment to Marshfield into the Milwaukee-Dearborn Subway, which continued under Milwaukee, under Lake Street, then under Dearborn, later connecting to the Congress-Douglas trains under Congress Street upon that alignment's completion in 1958. Garfield Park and Douglas Park trains to and from the Loop, however, continued to operate over the old Met main line and through Racine for the time being.

In 1953, the Garfield Park Line was rerouted via temporary grade-level trackage along Van Buren due to expressway construction, returning to the old elevated main line at Aberdeen, a block east of Racine. Racine station remained open one more year, serving Douglas trains, which still reached the Loop via the old Met main line. Racine station was closed on April 4, 1954, when the Douglas branch was rerouted to the Loop via the Paulina Connector and Lake Line, allowing the old Met elevated to be demolished between Marshfield and Aberdeen.

A replacement station, Racine, was opened on the Congress Line.



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