The McCormick Place Station opened in January 1996 when the new South Convention Center Halls opened. This expansion of the convention center was built over the existing and little-used 23 Street Station. This location was renovated into the new station. The stop is served by regularly scheduled Metra Electric trains hourly or better throughout weekdays; primarily from local trains to Blue Island or South Chicago-93rd Street with most express trains to University Park skip the station. Some trips make the stop as a flag stop. All South Shore Line trains serve the station during weekends only as a flag stop (with weekday trains making special stops for major weekday convention center events), although the station lacks South Shore signage or any other passenger information that South Shore trains stop at McCormick Place.
The current station consists of a single wide island platform that feels like your in a tunnel beneath the South Convention Center. Although the platform is enclosed in concrete from the building above it, it still has a series of 4 alternating white and black single-dome bus shelters. All access to the platform is at its northern end. A single staircase followed by an elevator leads up to a small former (before turnstiles were removed in 2003) fare control area that still has two cash TVMs and a new credit card TVM. This fare control area leads directly into Level 2.5 of the Grand Concourse in the South Convention Center. Doors with small Metra logos lead out to a wide outdoor plaza with very few markings for riders trying to find Metra from the convention center drop-off area along from Martin Luther King Drive. Reaching the nearest city street requires going down some outdoor steps. Wheelchair riders can use an elevator in a nearby indoor area that is marked with the Metra Logo and a wheelchair, making it seem like it is the Metra entrance, when the actual entrance is a further ~350 feet beyond, and ambulatory riders should just use the outdoor steps. There are a few signs for the Metra station in the entrance plaza but everything is poorly marked. This is a shame to the surrounding community and to visitors from Metra and South Shore Line suburbs since Chinatown with its cultural amenities is only a mile walk down Cermak Drive.
All Photos taken on 2 July, 2013