HOBART | U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky will be keynote speaker at a free forum Monday to promote the extension of the South Shore commuter railroad.
"Laying Tracks for the Future" is set from 6 to 8 p.m. at Avalon Manor, 3550 E. U.S. 30, Hobart.
The event is sponsored by the recently created Emerging Leaders Network, which is joining the call for action on the long-talked about expansion of the South Shore Line.
The Emerging Leaders Network, a coalition of groups of young Northwest Indiana professionals, identified expanding the South Shore as priority at its first meeting.
On Monday, those people and the public can get the facts on where the effort now stands.
A study commissioned by South Shore operator Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District shows the proposed 8-mile extension to Dyer would attract 5,600 riders daily.
Riders on the existing South Shore commuter railroad bring about $237.5 million in wages back to Northwest Indiana annually from well-paying jobs in Chicago's Loop, according to the same study. With the extension and other improvements planned for the existing South Shore system, that figure would increase by about $147.3 million.
Visclosky, D-Merrillville, currently is rallying local communities to support the South Shore extension by putting up a share of their receipts from Lake County's new county economic development income tax.