Quincy-Wells Stop to Offer a Return Trip to the Past


Date of Publication: November 28, 1985
Source: Chicago Tribune


Commuters next spring will be able to take a step back into history--to 1897, to be exact-- when the rehabilitation of the Chicago Transit Authority's Quincy-Wells station is completed.

The station is one of seven on the Loop elevated structure that is being refurbished under a program costing more than $30 million, said Robert French, project manager in the city's Department of Public Works. But it is the only one to be restored to its original appearance.

Plans call for scraping off layers of old paint and putting on a new coat in the same shade of brown that an architectural historian, hired by the city for the project, has found graced Quincy-Wells when it opened 88 years ago. Light fixtures that imitate the original hardware will be installed, fancy stamped sheet metal will be affixed to ceilings and walls, and new versions of original oak doors and moldings will be put in place.

The station, closed earlier this month to allow the work to begin, is scheduled to reopen in about four months with its facelift complete, French said.

The federal Urban Mass Transportation Administration, which is providing the brunt of rehabilitation money for all of the stations, required that one of them be restored to its original condition because the Loop "L" has been designated a national landmark, French said.

The Quincy-Wells portion of the project is to cost $2.25 million, substantially under the $3 million to $5 million that will be spent on the other stations slated for work.

That is largely because federal regulations do not call for installation of costly elevators or escalators on restoration projects, French said.

The six other Loop stations scheduled for upgrading are to be completed by late 1989. They are Adams-Wabash, Washington-Wabash, State-Lake, Clark-Lake, Washington-Wells and State-Van Buren.