The St. Clair County Transit District (SCCTD) Board of Trustees announced it has approved a more than $9.4 million contract with WSP USA for the engineering and design services associated with the 5.5-mile, light rail expansion project set to extend the MetroLink alignment in Illinois from the Shiloh-Scott MetroLink Station to MidAmerica St. Louis Airport. This project is being completed in partnership with Bi-State Development/Metro Transit and Gonzalez Companies with $96 million in funding through Governor Pritzker’s Rebuild Illinois Plan passed in 2019.
WSP USA’s project team includes EFK Moen, LLC; Millennia Professional Services; SCI Engineering, Inc.; and TWM, Inc. This mix represents a four percent increase (25 percent to 29 percent) in overall participation by St. Clair County-based firms compared to the goal outlined in the RFP. Additionally, DBE participation has increased from its 25.8 percent goal to 26.8 percent.
“We are excited to partner with WSP USA on this project,” said Herb Simmons, Chair of the St. Clair County Board of Trustees. “They bring years of light rail experience to the table, and the increased participation of local firms means even bigger economic impact on our local community. We are also very pleased to see an increase in DBE participation.”
An expansion of the light rail system in St. Clair County was originally designed in the late 1990s with the goal of extending the MetroLink from the existing passenger station at 5th & Missouri in East St. Louis to the main terminal at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport in Mascoutah. Due to funding limitations, only the portion that runs from the 5th & Missouri Station to the Shiloh-Scott Station was constructed, leaving the planned extension between the Shiloh-Scott Station and MidAmerica St. Louis Airport as fully designed but not constructed. St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern and the SCCTD Board of Trustees recently made the decision to pursue the completion of the second part of the extension from its current terminus to a new terminus at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport. Along with this 5.5-mile mainline extension, an access roadway connecting to Reider Road will be also be constructed adjacent to the extension.
The project is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2022 and will provide much-needed transportation services to the growing MidAmerica St. Louis Airport, which is home to numerous businesses. Current tenants include Allegiant Airlines, Boeing, Aviation Materials and Technical Support (AVMATS), the Army National Guard and North Bay Produce.