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Durbin, Bean blast Canadian National freight traffic plan
Associated Press
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Published: 2/29/2008 7:35 AM

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Members of Illinois' congressional delegation are criticizing the Canadian National Railway's plan to divert freight traffic around Chicago's congested rail corridor.

Senator Dick Durbin and Representative Melissa Bean are warning the diversion would have a negative impact on many communities and could jeopardize Amtrak and expanded Metra service.

The lawmakers called on Canadian National officials to meet with them and answer questions about the railroad's proposed $300 million purchase of the lightly used Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway. The line arcs around the Chicago area from Waukegan to Joliet to Gary.

The Canadian National maintains that bypassing congested Chicago freight yards will benefit northeast Illinois in particular and the nation's commerce in general.