The Metra commuter rail service is starting a new round of railcar improvements.
Metra recently completed rehabilitation of 176 railcars the rail service received between 1995 and 1998. The next 302 cars that are being rehabbed were delivered between 2002 and 2008.
Each rail car will get new seats, better air conditioning and electric outlets so passengers can power cellphones and other electronics. New LED signs will display announcements inside each car. New bathrooms and wheelchair lifts also will be installed.
The work is being done by Metra employees at a cost of about $700,000 per railcar.
Metra says it takes about 28 days to rehab each car, and the work will extend the life of each railcar up to 15 years.