A recent report from a global engineering firm shows the potential costs and economic impact associated with five possible sites for a rerouted stop along the South Shore rail line in South Bend. The AECOM (NYSE: ACM) report suggests the base cost associated with the locations would range from $23.8 million to $102.3 million. Development in and around the sites, the study presented to the city council suggests, could generate an economic impact of anywhere from $83.8 million to $415.3 million.
Shifting the current path of the line is one part of a long-term, complex series of proposals that include double-tracking the South Shore from Michigan City to Gary to reduce a South Bend-to-Chicago trip from the current two-hour-and-forty-minute travel time to 90 minutes. The city last year announced it would kick in $25 million toward rerouting the path.
According to the report, the estimated base costs for each alternative are:
- Site 1: Chocolate Factory – $44.3 million
- Site 2 : Honeywell – $23.9 million
- Site 3: Amtrak – $31.7 million
- Site 4: Downtown – $102.3 million
- Proposed Realigned Airport Station (Alt G) – $29.5 million
The potential economic impact over 10 years for the alternatives according to the report are:
- Site 1: Chocolate Factory – $144.4 million
- Site 2 : Honeywell – $171.5 million (mixed-use scenario) or $132 million (industrial use scenario)
- Site 3: Amtrak – $139.7 million
- Site 4: Downtown – $415.3 million
- Proposed Realigned Airport Station (Alt G) – $83.8 million
- Current Airport Station, without building – $39 million