If you use the downtown Riverside Metra station to commute to and from work, or if you have a kid who crosses the tracks downtown to get to and from school each day, gird yourselves for a real pain-in-the-neck week.

On Friday, June 3 at 9 a.m., the Burlington Northern-Santa Fe Railroad will be shutting down the Longcommon Road grade crossing to both vehicular and pedestrian traffic as the railroad completely rebuilds and widens the crossing.

Work is expected to last an entire week, weather permitting, and reopen at 4 p.m. on Friday, June 10.

But during that week of construction, commuters who drive to the lot west of the train station and those who walk from either side of the tracks for the Chicago commute are going to have to do a bit of advance planning.

Those who live or park south of the tracks will find a long walk ahead of them as they seek to get back south of the tracks in the evening. The same goes, in reverse, for those who live north of the tracks and walk to the station for the morning commute.

The BNSF and local police are designating the Cowley Road crossing as the official detour and are asking both drivers and pedestrians to use that crossing to get over the tracks in either direction.

That will make traffic far heavier on East Burlington Street, which is under construction, and may result in some delays.

While Riverside-Brookfield High School will not be in session that week, District 96 schools will be in session until June 6 and St. Mary School will be in session until June 8, so students who cross the tracks to get to and from school will be affected.

Deputy Police Chief David Krull said Riverside will step up patrols near the Longcommon crossing in the morning and evening hours and the village has asked BNSF police to station officers at the Longcommon crossing to discourage commuters from crossing the tracks.

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