Transportation Notice


Local Road Construction Notice
Sheridan Road. Beginning in February, IDOT will begin work on traffic signal modernization on Sheridan Road. The project consists of traffic signal modernization and modifications, timing optimizations, curb and gutter removal and replacement, and sidewalk removal and replacement. The project will go from Grand Avenue to IL 173 in Beach Park, Waukegan, and Zion and is estimated to be completed in November.

Specific details of the construction will be discussed at a preconstruction meeting between IDOT and the contractor on February 3, 2015 at 10a.m. at the IDOT facility at 201 W. Center Court, Schaumburg, IL 60196. For any questions concerning this project, please contact Area Construction Supervisor Mary Ellen Mack at (847) 705-4465.


IL Route 83.
Beginning in March, IDOT will begin work on traffic signal interconnection and timing optimization of IL Route 83. The project will go from Millstone Drive to North Avenue on IL Route 83 in Antioch, Lake Villa, and Round Lake Beach. The project is expected to be completed in November.

Specific details of the construction will be discussed at a preconstruction meeting between IDOT and the contractor on February 3, 2015 at 1p.m. at the IDOT facility at 201 W. Center Court, Schaumburg, IL 60196. For any questions concerning this project, please contact Area Construction Supervisor Mary Ellen Mack at (847) 705-4465.
 
Toll Road Rebuilding 
Toll highway rebuild to continue. Governor Bruce Rauner has approved an exemption from the overall spending freeze for ongoing rebuilding and widening projects being implemented by the Illinois Tollways. The package of construction projects is expected to cost more than $1 billion. The rebuilding and widening projects are “self-financed” through toll increases paid for by toll road users. They are expected to reduce traffic bottlenecks and increase the ability of toll road users to drive to work, go shopping, and carry out other day-to-day activities. Immediately affected is a $174 million package of contracts for roadway and bridge reconstruction and widening on the close-to-Chicago section of the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway, a stretch of roadway that stretches between Elgin and O’Hare Airport. This Jane Addams work can now go forward. The Chicago Tribune describes the tollway projects and Rauner’s decision here.

Illinois Tollways debts are separate from the other debts of the State. The Illinois Toll Highway Authority collects tolls and sells debt securities based on future Chicago-area and Northern Illinois toll revenues. These future revenue streams are relatively predictable and secure, based upon the spreadsheets collaborated upon by the Tollways and their underwriters. The Governor and his staff examined the financial status of the Tollways’ debt and projects and concluded that completing currently-planned Tollway expansion and reconstruction work would not damage the general fiscal standing of the State or the specific fiscal standing of the Illinois Tollways.
 
Toll Road Speed Limits 
Some sections of Illinois toll roads can now be legally driven at 70 mph. A change in policy by the Illinois Toll Highway Authority, the independent panel that serves as a governing board for Illinois toll roads, was necessary to bring these limited-access highways into line with Illinois’ overall 70 mph policy. The faster speed limit signs, which match signs already posted on many of Illinois’ Downstate freeways, are covered in AgriNews.

Other changes in law that affect toll road users include a 40 percent increase in tolls paid by drivers of two-axle and three-axle trailers, typically used by commercial drivers who guide Class 8 heavy freight-carrying trucks. The toll increase became effective on January 1, 2015 as part of an overall package of toll increases imposed by the Illinois Tollways upon its users. Proceeds from the toll increases are intended to service debts sold by the Toll Highway Authority to maintain and expand their existing inventory of infrastructure.

Many limited-access highways located outside major Illinois metropolitan areas can now be legally driven at 70 mph. Drivers are warned to continue to maintain safe speeds depending on actual driving conditions. In addition, posted speed limits often drop sharply as a limited-access highway approaches a densely populated area. Drivers should watch out for these changes in traffic density and obey posted speed limits. Sections of toll roads that run through densely populated and trafficked areas, such as sections of the Tri-State Tollway, are not expected to be reposted to higher speeds.