This route had a somewhat respectable level of commuter service until 1932. Until 2006, Orland Park was the official end of commuter service. From 1932 to 1964, the commuter market was served by a train actually operating to and from Decatur IL, but with the schedule within the Chicago area coinciding with the typical rush hour. In 1964, the train began operating strictly between Chicago and Orland Park. The addition of a second train by the RTA in 1978 actually marked the beginning of a gradual expansion, into more of a full service commuter operation. Between Chicago/Dearborn Station and 74th St., trains operated over the Chicago & Western Indiana, which formerly had its own local commuter trains. Intercity trains operated until the formation of Amtrak in 1971, with Oak Lawn the only surviving station when passenger service was discontinued.
During the 1940's, the Official Guide Of The Railways began listing several additional stops for the commuter train. It is not known if the stops were made in earlier years, but not listed in the Official Guide.
Stations capitalized and without commentary are present Metra stations, further information on stations at official Metra Web Site.
Milepost locations are indicated, distance from Chicago.
Exact locations are not available for all stations.
During the 1940's, the Official Guide Of The Railways began listing stops at Halsted Street, Racine Avenue, Ashland Avenue, and Western Avenue. These stops were listed in timetables until the late 1970's. Western Avenue was discontinued in 1984. But a personal inspection of the right of way in 1977, did not reveal an obvious means of accessing any of those stops. In that area, the elevated right of way parallels 74th St., one block to the south.
WRIGHTWOOD (11.4) - was renamed from Landers, the name of the nearby freight yard.
ASHBURN (12.2) - a 1901 Official Guide Of The Railways mentions a "Clarkdale Jct.". The Clarkdale area of Chicago was later renamed Ashburn. An early station apparently was a joint station with Grand Trunk Western, with their respective lines crossing there.
OAK LAWN (14.6) - station was previously located between Cook Ave. and 53rd Ave., on the north side of the tracks, and two blocks west of the present location.
CHICAGO RIDGE (16.6)
Worth Racetack - was served by a spur, with a station on the south side of 111th St. east of Ridgeland Ave. The racetrack was closed in 1911, and Holy Sepulchre Cemetery was built on that site.
WORTH (17.8) - station was previously located southwest of the intersection of 110th St. and Depot St., near the present station location. But the station building was previously on the north side of the tracks. Southwest of that location is the major intersection of 111th St. and Harlem Ave., where the railroad was at grade level until the late 1970's or early 1980's, when the present overpass was constructed.
PALOS HEIGHTS (18.6)
PALOS PARK (19.9) - station was previously located north of 123rd St., on the west side of the tracks. At the time, the railroad followed a path further to the west.
Southmoor (21.2) - was first listed in the Official Guide Of The Railways during the 1940's, and was listed in timetables until the late 1970's. But during a personal inspection of the right of way in 1977, a station or stop could not be located. But was probably located near 131st St., which is an overpass over the railroad. This may have been the most difficult to find railroad stop in the Chicago area.
ORLAND PARK (23.2) - station was previously located along Union Ave. south of 143rd St., on the west side of the tracks. Eventually, a makeshift station, and now a more permanent station, were constructed north of 143rd St. Metra eventually constructed two additional stations in Orland Park, further south.
ORLAND PARK 153RD STREET (25.2)
Alpine (26.5) - beyond the original end of the commuter segment was the town of Alpine, which became a ghost town in 1912 after all the buildings burned down. Station was located north of 167th St., on the west side of the track. The milepost location is from a 1941 employee timetable, while 167th St. is actually at milepost 26.8. That area is now part of the suburban sprawl of a rapidly growing Orland Park.
ORLAND PARK 179TH STREET (28.7)
Marley (30.1) - another ghost town, with the station apparently located north of 187th St.
New Lenox (33.2) - station apparently was located north of US Highway 30/Lincoln Highway, and south of the bridge over the Rock Island line.
Steele (33.6) - station apparently was in New Lenox, and located south of US Highway 30/Lincoln Highway.
Brisbane (34.6) - station apparently was located north of the bridge over the Elgin Joliet & Eastern.
LARAWAY ROAD (35.4)
Manhattan (39.6) - old station was located south of State St., on the west side of the track and north of the new station.
Cook County Suburbs (S)
Will County (C)