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Chicago is the southernmost stop effected by the Brown Line Capacity Expansion Project and received some of the most drastic platform and entrance changes to straighten out the platforms because the tracks become quite curving after trains cross Chicago Avenue to leave the ROW running above Franklin Street and curve onto an independent ROW between Franklin and Orleans Streets (and curve west again before the next stop Sedgwick). The station entrance was originally in a station house used since the station's opening in 1900 on the northside of Chicago Avenue until October 15, 2007. It still exists but is now used by the CTA as an ancillary equipment building (Chicago-L.org History). There is something very strange about seeing this historic station no longer beneath a platform.

The modern station has two side platforms that lack a free crossover or under (something extremely rare outside of the downtown loop). They begin with the main staffed entrances at their northern ends. Here a modern silver walled staircase and glass and brick elevator tower lead up from either the SW or SE corners of Chicago Avenue and Franklin Street. These lead up to turnstiles directly at the end of each platform. The little fare control areas have simple mesh walls with Vending Machines and booths for customer assistants. Continuing down the platforms there are small canopies that cover about two cars relocated from the original platforms held up by brown beams. The rest of the platforms are left exposed with a simple low silver fence and silver lampposts. The platform is still made of wood. A third of the way from the southern end of the station are secondary entrances. The Loop-bound platform has three high entrance/exit farecard-only turnstiles that lead to a small mesh landing (used as a temporary staffed entrance during construction) before a modern silver street stair down to the NW corner of Superior and Franklin Streets. The Northbound platform also has three high entrance/exit turnstiles that lead to a larger mesh area that has a coke machine but the CTA won't install FVMs because those are only allowed at 'staffed' entrances. One staircase leads down to the SE corner.
All Photos taken on 4 August, 2001

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A platform sign, the arrow pointing towards the elevator is on the Brown Line background, not grey as standard
A mini platform sign
A train leaves the station
Looking across the high entrance/exit turnstiles to Superior Street
High entrance/exit turnstiles from the northbound platform to Superior St
The wide, temperarily staffed exit to Superior Street
Going down to the street
Bottom of the street stair up to Superior Street
Behind the Superior Street station house
Beneath the Chicago end of the station
The original and now unused station house due to the curve above it
Beneath the station
One of entrances to Chicago and elevator shaft beyond
The tall glass and brick elevator shaft
Chicago compass
The signs all for Loop on the staircases up to that platform
One of the elevators
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Last Updated: 26 September, 2012
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