Thursday, February 9, 2017

Opening of the Niles Center (Skokie) Train Service in 1925.

The opening festivities around the ‘L’ service being brought to Niles Center in 1925. Service on the North Shore Line’s Skokie Valley Route also passed through here, and the 'L’ shared track out to this location. (Niles Centre, Incorporated 1888; Americanized to Niles Center1910; Renamed to Skokie 1940)
The Niles Center route originally had several stops, but after 'L’ service had been discontinued along it in the 1940s (though, the North Shore Line continued to use it through 1963), the route was reopened with 'L’ service as the CTA Skokie Swift in 1964. The Swift was an experimental service to connect suburban drivers via Park & Ride to Chicago via high-speed rapid transit services. It was a successful experiment, and was kept as a regular CTA service. Today, it’s officially known as the Yellow Line, but many experienced riders still refer to it as the “Skokie Swift.”

The station building in the left of the photo, while moved a short distance, still survives today at the end of the Yellow Line as a retail/commercial property while trains serve a modest and modern, accessible facility in approximately this same location.

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