Pace reveals completed bus station along Pulse Dempster Line

Aug. 10, 2023
The Pulse Dempster Line will provide faster bus service with limited stops, accessible trip information and modern amenities to the community.

The first completed bus station along the Pulse Dempster Line was unveiled to state and local officials joined by Pace Suburban Bus leadership on Aug. 9 in downtown Des Plaines, Ill.

The Pulse Dempster Line will provide faster bus service with limited stops, accessible trip information and modern amenities to the community. Riders can take trips every 15 minutes most of the day when the service fully launches. Each Pulse bus that operates along the line comes equipped with advanced transit signal priority (TSP) technology that extends green lights and minimizes red lights to help Pace riders conquer congestion.

“The Pace Pulse Dempster line will improve the lives of Des Plaines residents and beyond. With multiple stops for this line within our city limits, we are excited about the opportunity for more efficient trips around town and to O’Hare,” said Des Plaines Mayor Andrew Goczkowski.

The celebratory station unveiling in Des Plaines kick started Pace’s “sneak peak” service of the Pulse Dempster Line. Starting August 13, riders can use the newest Pulse line on Sundays only and experience the increased service and purple Pulse buses equipped with Wi-Fi and USB charging ports before full daily service begins later this year.

Pace Chairman Rick Kwasneski opened the event on Wednesday by acknowledging the many partners and individuals who collaborated to make the innovative service improvement in the northwest suburbs a reality, including Illinois State Representative Marty Moylan for his support of this project. He also thanked Illinois Sen. Laura Murphy (D-IL) and Des Plaines Mayor Goczkowski for sharing remarks and helping Pace mark the opening of the new station.

“Pace is proud of our region’s investment in transit infrastructure in the northwest suburbs. It has made it possible for Pace to introduce this efficient and reliable service. “This is yet another example of how our region’s service boards collaborate and complement each other. Pulse truly creates a network of access across our region," said Chairman Kwasneski said.

Pace Director Chris Canning emphasized the importance of the collaboration that helped Pace launch its second-ever Pulse line. The start of the Pulse Dempster Line follows the opening of the Pulse Milwaukee Line in 2019. Canning said the Pulse Dempster Line could not have happened without the support and partnership of Des Plaines, Evanston, Skokie, Morton Grove, Niles, Park Ridge and Rosement.

“Investment in transit infrastructure, like we see here today, spurs economic growth by creating immediate jobs and, in the long-term, increasing safe and reliable access to employment, shopping, dining and entertainment while saving passengers money with an affordable and environmentally friendly transportation option,” Director Canning said.

Pulse Dempster service will travel along Dempster Street between Evanston and O’Hare International Airport, offering connections along the way to other Pace and Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) bus routes, the CTA Yellow and Purple lines, as well as to Metra’s Union Pacific North, Northwest and North Central Service rail lines. Passengers will be able to get from Evanston to O’Hare in approximately 50 minutes, saving customers time over current Pace service.

“What a fabulous opportunity to help move people quickly throughout the northwest suburbs,” Murphy said. “I’m really proud to work with Pace, proud to see how they interconnect with communities and other transportation systems and how all these governmental agencies can work together and produce something that really helps people’s lives.”

During the event, Pace Executive Director Melinda Metzger shared how the new Pulse Dempster Line represents Pace’s latest service innovation at a time when the future of transit remains uncertain following the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Pace has worked tirelessly to maintain existing service and spearhead many innovative changes that can help riders meet their post-pandemic travel needs. Over the past two years, Pace has launched new transit options like VanGo and partnerships with ride-share companies like the DuPage Access Program and Pace Connect to increase service capacity and provide riders with more flexible connections. Pace also has leveraged new technologies to simplify trip planning and incorporate all of Pace’s transportation services under one easy-to-use app called Transit," Metzger said.

The Pulse Dempster Line harnesses many of the same innovative technologies, Metzger said before she helped unveil a unique feature of the Pulse station in Des Plaines — a real-time information station marker that displays up-to-the-minute arrival times for Pace riders.

“Collaboration has been an integral part of achieving these goals. Collaboration with our communities, with our sister agencies and colleagues at Metra, CTA, RTA, CMAP, and, most importantly, with those we serve. We are grateful for our partners, and I look forward to seeing what we achieve together in the coming years. Life is good in Des Plaines, and we at Pace will continue to make it better for your residents and our riders," Metzger said.