CHICAGO - Metra initiated the beginning stages of its new train-tracking website on Tuesday.
New GPS technology offer real-time train tracking so customers can see precisely where their trains are via metratracker.com.
"This new train tracking system is a major upgrade and will be a dramatic improvement in our communications to My Metra customers," said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. "It enables us to do a better job of tracking trains and conveying timely, accurate information, and also includes a variety of interactive new features."
The site has three main functions: Station Times, Real-Time Map, and Trip Planner.
The first allows customers to check for train departure times from their selected station. The Real-Time Map offers an interactive map showing the exact locations of trains along each line. While the Trip Planner offers information on best routes between the customer's current location and desired destination.
The new technology cost $26.7 million and required the installation of new GPS tracking devices and other network equipment on more than 1,000 railcars and in 238 stations.
The new tracking equipment is currently being installed on Union Pacific, SWS and BNSF trains and tracking on those lines will increase as the rollout is completed this year, Metra said in a statement Tuesday.