Crain’s Headlines: Cash Infusion for High-Profile CTA Project


A huge Chicago Transit Authority construction job has just received another $100 million in federal funding.

U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley on Monday announced the key funding infusion for the CTA’s ongoing Red and Purple Line Modernization Program.

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The most visible portion of the project — the so-called Belmont Avenue flyover — is scheduled to begin within days. When work is completed by 2024, northbound Brown Line tracks will pass over the Red and Purple line tracks. Those Brown Line tracks now have to cross the Red and Purple lines at the same grade at the Clark Junction, forcing trains to wait for clearance.

The CTA says the flyover will make it possible to add several more trains each way during rush hour. In the meantime, there inevitably will be construction delays, and there has been some criticism in the Lakeview neighborhood of the size and impact of such a large elevated structure.

In other local business news:

Rush University Medical Center placed first among 93 comprehensive academic medical centers in a new evaluation of clinical performance, quality and accountability. Rush was the only Chicago-area hospital to be recognized in the latest ranking done by the health care consulting firm Vizient. The consultancy looked at quality performance at 349 U.S. hospitals, and this is the seventh consecutive year for Rush to be ranked in the top five.

And finally, former Johnson Publishing CEO Desiree Rogers, who oversaw that company’s Fashion Fair makeup line, is back in the cosmetics business.

Rogers, who also was the White House social secretary under former President Barack Obama, has become the CEO of Black Opal Beauty, a 25-year-old company that has set up an office in the Merchandise Mart, sources tell Crain’s.

Rogers is teaming up with one of her former Fashion Fair execs, Cheryl Mayberry McKissack, to co-own the company, which has been making cosmetics for women of color for 25 years. No word yet on where the company will be headquartered — it was founded in Long Island, New York.


Crain’s Headlines is a joint production between WTTW and Crain’s Chicago Business. It airs every Monday through Thursday on the WTTW News program “Chicago Tonight.” 


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