Union Pacific / West Line

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Union Pacific West Line
Type Commuter Rail
System Metra
Termini Ogilvie Transportation Center
Stations 19
Daily ridership 27,196 (avg. weekday 2014)[1]
Owner Union Pacific Railroad (Leased to Metra)
Operator(s) Union Pacific Railroad
Line length 44 miles[2]
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Route map
 West Line 
44.0 mi
70.8 km
40.8 mi
65.7 km
La Fox
35.5 mi
57.1 km
Fox River
Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway
29.7 mi
47.8 km
West Chicago
27.5 mi
44.3 km
Illinois Prairie Path
25.0 mi
40.2 km
23.8 mi
38.3 km
College Avenue
22.4 mi
36 km
Glen Ellyn
DuPage River
19.9 mi
32 km
17.8 mi
28.6 km
Villa Park
Illinois Central
Salt Creek
15.7 Elmhurst
14.3 mi
23 km
12.7 mi
20.4 km
Addison Creek
Indiana Harbor Belt
11.3 mi
18.2 km
Melrose Park
10.5 mi
16.9 km
Des Plaines River
9.7 mi
15.6 km
River Forest
Canadian Pacific Railway
8.5 mi
13.7 km
Oak Park
CTA Green Line
to Ashland/63rd and Cottage Grove
Belt Railway of Chicago
M19A (employees only)
3.6 mi
5.8 km
MD-N MD-W NCS Amtrak
2.6 mi
4.2 km
MD-N MD-W NCS Amtrak to
CTA Green and Pink lines
0.0 Ogilvie Transportation Center

The Union Pacific West Line (UP-W) is a Metra commuter rail line operated by Union Pacific Railroad in Chicago, Illinois and its suburbs. Metra does not refer to its lines by particular colors, but the timetable accents for the Union Pacific/West line are "Kate Shelley Rose" pink, honoring an Iowa woman who saved a Chicago & North Western Railway train from disaster in 1881.[3] In April 2013 the public timetable shows 30 trains leaving Chicago each weekday, of which 22 run to Elburn. All weekend trains run to Elburn. Of the 8 trains on weekdays that do not run through to Elburn, 4 terminate at Elmhurst, 2 at Geneva, 1 at West Chicago, and 1 at La Fox. All weekend trains run through to Elburn. Until 2006, all trains that terminated at Elburn today terminated at Geneva.

The line runs from the Ogilvie Transportation Center in downtown Chicago through the western suburbs to Elburn. This is the oldest railway route in Chicago, the route of the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad along Kinzie street.

In late spring 2009 Union Pacific began an upgrade to the line. A third mainline track will be built between Elmhurst and River Forest, major signal system upgrades, the consolidation of the Bellwood and Melrose Park Stations (separate project), removal of all mid-platform pedestrian crossings at stations, warning systems for pedestrians, and new platforms. Work will be completed by late December 2010.

Speculation exists that the line could be extended from Elburn west through Maple Park and Cortland to DeKalb. This would provide greater access for North-Central Illinois Residents to the Chicago area, as well as for students at Northern Illinois University. Maple Park has indicated that adding a Metra stop in the town is in the County's 2040 transportation plan.[4] Further west remains uncertain.[5] Union Pacific has already said that these plans are unlikely to go through if Geneva does not allow a third track to go through their town. This is due to the high usage of the rail for both freight and passenger trains. Freight trains currently back up in rural Elburn for a half-hour or more waiting for a clear line to West Chicago.

Station stops[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on March 26, 2016. Retrieved April 1, 2016. 
  2. ^ Metra Railfan Tips - Union Pacific/West
  3. ^ "Did you know?" (PDF). On the Bi-Level: 3. June 2009. 
  4. ^ "Kane County Long Range Transit Plan" (PDF). Kane County, IL. Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  5. ^ "DeKalb-to-Chicago passenger train not in immediate future". Northern Star. September 26, 2007. Retrieved December 31, 2011. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Bing / Google

KML is from Wikidata

Media related to Metra Union Pacific/West Line at Wikimedia Commons