Metra reduces service as ridership plummets during pandemic
CHICAGO - The number of Metra trains rolling in and out of Chicago every day is about to drop dramatically.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the commuter rail agency, in response to the the ridership slump during the coronavirus crisis, is cutting service on its three least busy lines.
Starting Monday, the Heritage Corridor, which runs between Union Station and Joliet, the number of inbound trains every morning will drop from three to one and the number of outbound trains will drop from four to one.
Metra is reducing the number of North Central Service trains that run between Union Station and Antioch from seven in each direction every day to one. And the SouthWest Service, which has been running 10 trains in each direction between Union Station and Manhattan, Ill., will run just two in each direction.
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Metra says that because only a total of about 220 people ride the three lines every day, commuters will still have enough room for social distancing.
In March, Metra cut its weekday service in half when the statewide stay-at-home order led to a drastic reduction in ridership. Metra said the latest reduction will save it about about $470,000 a month in fuel and labor costs.