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Author Topic: Illinois notes  (Read 178118 times)

edwaleni

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1400 on: April 12, 2019, 11:17:38 PM »

I-39 from Rockford to Bloomington is by far the WORST maintained road I have ever traveled.  The past 3 weeks I took a road trip through 9 states and never encountered anything like this anywhere else.  There were potholes from the entrance ramp south of Rockford to the merge with I-55 by Bloomington.  I just kept praying my tires would survive.  It looked just as bad on the other side of the road going north.

The section from Rockford to I-88 at Rochelle is the oldest.(1984)  Then the section from Rochelle to I-80 was built. (1986) After the Lincoln bridge opened over the Illinois River at LaSalle-Peru, it ended at IL-251 (former US-51) (1987)

When the bridge at the Illinois River was being done, the exit ramps at I-55 (Bloomington) were being done (1989) as well. But that section ended at Ziebarth Road (BUS US-51) and you used the existing 2 lane US-51.

Then construction went into this off again, on again phase where funding & planning ran into issues.  It took several more years for IDOT to complete the route.

The northbound route got extended from Ziebarth Road to south of Kappa.  It took an incredibly long, long time for the contractor to get the Mackinaw River bridge done. I remember driving by there how many times and saw very little progress. They would route you over to the 2 lane bridge (IL-251) so you could see up close what they were doing. It's an urban style design today with no median. 

Just before the bridge over the Mackinaw was finished, they got the contracts issued for the rest from Kappa up to IL-251 at Oglesby.

So the last section completed was the one between Minonk and El Paso. Everyone all remembers the "Wenona Weave" where they would re-route US-51 over to the freshly poured ROW, then back over to the old ROW. It was the longest part built right on top of the old US-51.

It took 5 solid years to get the section between Oglesby and Normal finished.

Why?

Quote
The highway from Oglesby south to Decatur was recommended to be a four-lane divided expressway, utilizing the existing road where possible. After a decade of lobbying and back and forth debate, Governor James R. Thompson announced in 1986 that US 51 would be rebuilt to Interstate standards from Oglesby to Bloomington–Normal.[11]

However, due to funding concerns and intense local opposition, it was decided that US 51 would not built to Interstate standards between Bloomington and Decatur.[12] The Bloomington-Decatur segment was instead upgraded to a four-lane divided expressway, with mostly at-grade intersections, just as the transportation committee proposed. To this day, there remains ramp stubs northwest of the city along I-72, where the highways were to connect.[13]

So based on the years of construction, I can understand why any part of I-39 between Rockford and I-88 would be in the worse shape. It is the oldest built in 1984. (34 years)  But bad road from Oglesby to Kappa is a surprise as it is 8 years younger (1992)

If IDOT followed its usual pattern, they paved asphalt over the original concrete to extend its life. But the base underneath is breaking up and causing the asphalt to fracture and breakup, hence the potholes.

If memory serves IDOT was only specifying an 8 inch concrete layer back then. For reference the Tollway specified a then record 12 inch pour depth on I-355 at the same time. (I think they are up to 16 now).

I remember bringing up the 12 inch pour the tollway used with an engineer from Kansas DOT. The first thing he said was "what are you doing, landing planes?....that is an airport depth!"

So all things considered the route is past or about to reach the end of its design life.
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Hot Rod Hootenanny

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1401 on: April 13, 2019, 12:00:24 AM »

So what is up with the invisible ramps to and from I-72/US 51 WB/SB near Decatur?
https://www.google.com/maps/@39.906617,-88.9903911,1146m/data=!3m1!1e3?hl=en&authuser=0

(If this has been explained earlier in this thread, just direct me to the post and I'll be quiet)
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ilpt4u

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1402 on: April 13, 2019, 12:21:12 AM »

I’m pretty sure it has been discussed previously, but basically, those are Ghost Ramps to the extended US 51 Freeway/I-39 should the Freeway extend to Decatur, which was/is? the plan eventually. The Freeway alignment breaks off US 51 north of the developed area approaching I-72, and bypasses it to the west to meet I-72, in what looks to have been a Y Interchange...Which is interesting anyway, because IL likes Trumpets, but does have some Freeway Ys as well

Heck, extending the Expressway/Freeway all the way to I-57 at Salem is kinda a plan, but not seriously.
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Revive 755

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1403 on: April 13, 2019, 10:41:02 AM »

I’m pretty sure it has been discussed previously, but basically, those are Ghost Ramps to the extended US 51 Freeway/I-39 should the Freeway extend to Decatur, which was/is? the plan eventually.

Quote from: ilpt4u
...Which is interesting anyway, because IL likes Trumpets, but does have some Freeway Ys as well

I was going to speculate the Y design fell out of favor due to the left side entrance/exits, but then the northern I-55/I-74 interchange is a trumpet instead of a Y.

Anyone remember whether the southern/eastern US 67/US 136 interchange for the Macomb Bypass was going to be a trumpet or a Y?

Given the number of other corridors awaiting funding just to get four lanes, I'm gonna go with "was the plan," barring some major Foxconn type development for Decatur.

Heck, extending the Expressway/Freeway all the way to I-57 at Salem is kinda a plan, but not seriously.

More recent versions had the expressway following US 51 down to I-64.
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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1404 on: April 13, 2019, 10:51:26 AM »

If it ever built it would be a diamond. 67 that is
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cwm1276

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1405 on: April 13, 2019, 11:07:27 AM »

I-39 received a resurfacing in Ogle county a couple years ago, which was badly needed.  Between Baxter Rd and Rockford now has rough road signs, at least southbound. 
I assume north of Baxter was going to be included in the US 20/I39 expansion plan that disappeared for around Rockford as the new I39 lanes moved the alignment for a couple of miles south of 20.
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Rick Powell

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1406 on: April 13, 2019, 10:16:56 PM »

Heck, extending the Expressway/Freeway all the way to I-57 at Salem is kinda a plan, but not seriously.

The 1969 Supplemental Freeway map showed a Salem I-57 connection, and I remember seeing a graphic of it on the news as a kid when we were on a visit in southern IL. The current US 51 EIS study from south of Pana to Centralia shows it tying in to the existing one-way couple at the north end of Centralia. It's only 7 miles or so from Sandoval to I-57 at Salem, so not too far out of the way, although a direct 57 connection would make more sense from a regional travel perspective. I have a feeling this section of US 51 will be a long time coming, it has been inching its way south from Decatur for the last 30 years, and the next logical section is the Pana bypass.
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Revive 755

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1407 on: April 13, 2019, 11:12:35 PM »

I-39 received a resurfacing in Ogle county a couple years ago, which was badly needed.  Between Baxter Rd and Rockford now has rough road signs, at least southbound.

There's also another sign assembly with a diamond shaped 'Stay in your lane' with a supplemental 'Avoid Lane Changes' plaque SB IIRC.
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Crash_It

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1408 on: April 13, 2019, 11:37:40 PM »

^^ That’s typical for IDOT.

No its not, only 18% of roads in IDOT jurisdiction are in mediocre or poor condition. I predict that stretch of I39 will be resurfaced this construction season. They're resurfacing an almost similar deteriorated stretch of US41 this season as well.
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Brandon

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1409 on: April 14, 2019, 02:37:16 AM »

 Bullshit, Crash, and you know it.  IDOT’s idea of “good” is most states’ “shitty”.
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Crash_It

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1410 on: April 14, 2019, 08:38:17 AM »

Bullshit, Crash, and you know it.  IDOT’s idea of “good” is most states’ “shitty”.

https://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/state-item/illinois/

Do your research next time. We're better than all surrounding states.
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JREwing78

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1411 on: April 14, 2019, 10:07:14 AM »

Bullshit, Crash, and you know it.  IDOT’s idea of “good” is most states’ “shitty”.

https://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/state-item/illinois/

Do your research next time. We're better than all surrounding states.

OK, I'll bite:

According to that site:

All infrastructure:

Illinois: C-
Michigan: D+  (Ok, that's 1)
Iowa: C-
Missouri: C-
Kentucky: C-
Minnesota: C

(Indiana, Ohio, & Wisconsin - these states were not graded)

Roads:
Illinois: D
Michigan: D- (Well earned, BTW)
Iowa: C-
Missouri: D+
Kentucky: D+
Minnesota: D+

Bridges:
Illinois: C
Michigan: C-
Iowa: D+
Missouri: C
Kentucky: C-
Minnesota: C

This is hardly the basis for claiming Illinois is "better than all surrounding states". At best, it can be characterized as "We're not the worst!"

Anecdotally, if you take out the ISTHA (Illinois Tollway) highways out of the picture (which in my experience are head-and-shoulders above IDOT-maintained roads), Illinois has some serious problems with road maintenance. Just in the Rockford area, US-20 around Rockford, large stretches of IL-251, and parts of I-39 are in deplorable condition. US-20 west of Freeport is long overdue for replacement by a modern roadway on new alignment.

My chief complaint with Illinois (and with Michigan) is how horrible they let things get before they respond with patching or repairs. Even with recent funding setbacks, I don't have to fear for my rims or suspension in Wisconsin anywhere near as much as in Illinois or Michigan.
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Revive 755

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1412 on: April 14, 2019, 12:51:02 PM »

Roads:
Illinois: D
Michigan: D- (Well earned, BTW)
Iowa: C-
Missouri: D+
Kentucky: D+
Minnesota: D+

Hmm, I must manage to miss all the bad roads in the other states except Michigan, or ISTHA's facilities are really skewing this.
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Brandon

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1413 on: April 14, 2019, 01:38:45 PM »

Roads:
Illinois: D
Michigan: D- (Well earned, BTW)
Iowa: C-
Missouri: D+
Kentucky: D+
Minnesota: D+

Hmm, I must manage to miss all the bad roads in the other states except Michigan, or ISTHA's facilities are really skewing this.


ISTHA really skews this.
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edwaleni

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1414 on: April 14, 2019, 03:46:24 PM »

Heck, extending the Expressway/Freeway all the way to I-57 at Salem is kinda a plan, but not seriously.

The 1969 Supplemental Freeway map showed a Salem I-57 connection, and I remember seeing a graphic of it on the news as a kid when we were on a visit in southern IL. The current US 51 EIS study from south of Pana to Centralia shows it tying in to the existing one-way couple at the north end of Centralia. It's only 7 miles or so from Sandoval to I-57 at Salem, so not too far out of the way, although a direct 57 connection would make more sense from a regional travel perspective. I have a feeling this section of US 51 will be a long time coming, it has been inching its way south from Decatur for the last 30 years, and the next logical section is the Pana bypass.

There are 2 studies to extend the US-51 spine line. One is the Pana Bypass down to Ramsey and the other is the Vandalia Bypass. (Ramsey to CR-1325)

IDOT's 2008 EIS for US-51 shows the 4 lane activity ultimately reaching I-64 west of Mt. Vernon.  The I-64 to Centralia 4-lane upgrade was prioritized based on a new economic impact model and completed.

As for the Vandalia Bypass, the first proposal by IDOT in 2010 was outright rejected by the local residents as it required the demolition of over 150 homes.

They came back with 4 alternatives in 2014, all west of Vandalia with varying levels of divergence from the original route. The most "efficient" route mileage wise  (but not an alternative) is to bypass to the east of town, but it is in Kaskaskia River floodlands and IDOT would have to raise the road levels significantly based on 100 year rains.

As for the ghost ramps for I-39 north of Decatur, IDOT owns the land betwen I-72 and Illiniwick Road W (County Road 20) and would require funding to finish the section where it would diverge from the original route for land acquisition.

In 2014, IDOT moved to a new economic impact model for determination of need for 4 lane or supplemental highways.

In the report they commented that IDOT got "burned" by 2 specific projects that had dubious economic models in retrospect. 

One was the I-180 Spur to Hennepin. The other was I-72 from Springfield to Quincy. These 2 routes are the lightest used in the IDOT 4-lane system.

I-180 was built to support a large steel plant near Hennepin which subsquently closed after the highway was done. It reopened and closed several time before biting the dust in 2004.

The I-72 Quincy route had support from all of the communities and politicians along the ROW, but as of today is nowhere close to its projected utility.

Under the new model, towns, and municipalities have to provide written proof directly from local businesses that they will actually use the road if updated and that it will improve business with jobs. (what a concept)

So when it came to the updating of US-51, the reports stated:

Quote
U.S. Route 51: Decatur to I-64 Planning Study (1987)

In 1986, state legislators, local elected officials, and community leaders met with IDOT to request that the US 51 Decatur to I-64 corridor be upgraded to a four-lane facility.  A 1980 IDOT study determined that four-lane construction was not warranted based on traffic volumes and existing capacity; however, the delegation argued that traveler safety and the area’s economic potential could be enhanced by this upgrading.  IDOT agreed to conduct a planning study to determine the appropriate nature of a four-lane highway facility to connect the US 51 bypass south of Decatur to the US 51/I-64 interchange south of Centralia. 

The study identified engineering and environmental issues along the corridor, established priorities for implementing segments of the corridor based on economic development potential, and determined appropriate interim actions to be pursued by IDOT.  The report was conducted internally by IDOT, led by the Division of Highways (engineering) and supported by OP&P (economic analysis and planning coordination).

From a strategic economic development perspective, the construction of a four-lane US 51 facility in this corridor intended to provide a direct north-south connection to facilitate improved commercial traffic flow between northern Illinois and markets in southern states.  The US 51 upgrade would be the final four-lane link for I-55/I-39 to I-57 south via US 51/I-64. For local economic development, the enhanced access to developable land would improve land values and potentially lead to industrial jobs along the corridor. The potential for economic development was assessed based on:
1.   Strengths of organized economic development programs
2.   Existing water and sewer infrastructure capacity to support economic development
3.   Availability of registered industrial sites and buildings
4.   History of business retention and jobs
5.   Potential of the corridor to attract growth industries identified by Governor James R. Thompson’s Office.

At the time of the study, the four largest communities along the corridor included Decatur, Pana, Vandalia and Centralia.  These cities were considered to have the greatest economic development potential.   Major employers along the corridor included Caterpillar, ADM, and Staley (now Tate & Lyle) in Decatur; Essex Wire in Pana; Brockway Plastics in Vandalia; and Rockwell International and Swan in Centralia.  Other towns along the corridor were primarily agri-business centers.  Grain Systems Inc. in Assumption, Illinois, was the largest employer among these communities.

The study was to determine which segments provided the best opportunity for economic development and should be prioritized for construction if a four-lane facility was constructed along the corridor.  Economic priority was to be assigned even though traffic volumes did not justify construction. Four segments – Decatur to Pana, Pana to Vandalia, Vandalia to Centralia and Centralia to I-64 – were identified with criteria used to assess which segment would contribute the greatest benefit, including existing four-lane access, economic retention, and highway usage by existing industry. Although not cited as a priority criterion, utility preparedness was also a factor in evaluating the potential for each segment.

The study concluded that the Centralia to I-64 segment should proceed first due to the location of an industrial park along US 51 on the south side of Centralia, the clustering of plastics manufacturers in this industrial park, and the heavy existing use of the segment by plastic-related chemical trucking.  In addition, the plastics industries needed quick access to Lambert Airport in St. Louis for some “just-in-time” deliveries.  Recommendations from the study also included:
•   Construction of a new four-lane facility through and around Pana,
•   Construction of a four-lane facility from the south end of the Decatur bypass at Elwin to north of Pana,
•   Construction of a four-lane facility from I-70 to north of the Vandalia Correction Center,
•   Construction of a four-lane facility from the south end of the existing four-lanes in Vandalia south to the abandoned railroad, then southeasterly to the existing alignment.

Subsequently, the Centralia to I-64 segment was constructed to four-lanes. The benefit of this facility was reported to IDOT by the Centralia Economic Development Office, which noted a significant increase in jobs in the community and the industrial park. Other segments have also been upgraded to four-lane improvements including:  a segment from Elwin south to Assumption, segments in the Pana area and a Vandalia segment from I-70 north to an uncertain point. The section of US 51 between Elwin and Assumption has been programmed and is being constructed as funding allows.  An Environmental Impact Study (EIS) has been completed for the section from Assumption to south of Pana, and an on-going EIS for the section from south of Pana to Centralia is underway.  The recommended bypass of Vandalia is significantly different than envisioned in the feasibility study.  The gap between Assumption and Centralia currently is not funded for construction.


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I-39

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1415 on: April 14, 2019, 10:21:03 PM »

Still baffled why US 51 between Bloomington to Decatur section wasn’t built to Interstate standards. The expressway they ended up putting there was inadequate and poorly built IMO. Decatur really missed out big time on a N/S Interstate connection.

Had they bit the bullet and done that, there may have been more pressure to finish the freeway to Salam. The I-39/FAP 412 corridor was probably the one supplemental freeway that needed to be constructed in its entirety as a freeway, but short sightedness in the 70s/80s doomed it.
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edwaleni

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1416 on: April 14, 2019, 11:11:33 PM »

Still baffled why US 51 between Bloomington to Decatur section wasn’t built to Interstate standards. The expressway they ended up putting there was inadequate and poorly built IMO. Decatur really missed out big time on a N/S Interstate connection.

Had they bit the bullet and done that, there may have been more pressure to finish the freeway to Salam. The I-39/FAP 412 corridor was probably the one supplemental freeway that needed to be constructed in its entirety as a freeway, but short sightedness in the 70s/80s doomed it.

The 1980 study said:

Quote
A 1980 IDOT study determined that four-lane construction was not warranted based on traffic volumes and existing capacity;

But they settled on a non-interstate plan as a compromise because the business and road safety studies warranted it. (just not the volumes)
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Crash_It

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1417 on: April 14, 2019, 11:20:00 PM »

Bullshit, Crash, and you know it.  IDOT’s idea of “good” is most states’ “shitty”.

https://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/state-item/illinois/

Do your research next time. We're better than all surrounding states.

OK, I'll bite:

According to that site:

All infrastructure:

Illinois: C-
Michigan: D+  (Ok, that's 1)
Iowa: C-
Missouri: C-
Kentucky: C-
Minnesota: C

(Indiana, Ohio, & Wisconsin - these states were not graded)

Roads:
Illinois: D
Michigan: D- (Well earned, BTW)
Iowa: C-
Missouri: D+
Kentucky: D+
Minnesota: D+

Bridges:
Illinois: C
Michigan: C-
Iowa: D+
Missouri: C
Kentucky: C-
Minnesota: C

This is hardly the basis for claiming Illinois is "better than all surrounding states". At best, it can be characterized as "We're not the worst!"

Anecdotally, if you take out the ISTHA (Illinois Tollway) highways out of the picture (which in my experience are head-and-shoulders above IDOT-maintained roads), Illinois has some serious problems with road maintenance. Just in the Rockford area, US-20 around Rockford, large stretches of IL-251, and parts of I-39 are in deplorable condition. US-20 west of Freeport is long overdue for replacement by a modern roadway on new alignment.

My chief complaint with Illinois (and with Michigan) is how horrible they let things get before they respond with patching or repairs. Even with recent funding setbacks, I don't have to fear for my rims or suspension in Wisconsin anywhere near as much as in Illinois or Michigan.

You missed the percentages of poor condition roads the states have. ISTHA is included but isn't significant enough to skew it. Wisconsin roads are worse, large portions of US12 and I43 through Walworth County are pothole ridden or otherwise not smooth. I41 between Milwaukee and Fon Du Lac is also in unsatisfactory condition, can't find a similar stretch of deterioration in IL. Such may even be resurfaced this year.
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Brandon

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1418 on: April 15, 2019, 03:17:39 PM »

You missed the percentages of poor condition roads the states have. ISTHA is included but isn't significant enough to skew it. Wisconsin roads are worse, large portions of US12 and I43 through Walworth County are pothole ridden or otherwise not smooth. I41 between Milwaukee and Fon Du Lac is also in unsatisfactory condition, can't find a similar stretch of deterioration in IL. Such may even be resurfaced this year.

Then post the percentages.  And you obviously haven't driven I-55 or I-80 through Joliet much.
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ilpt4u

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1420 on: April 15, 2019, 04:37:13 PM »

https://www.reviewatlas.com/news/20190411/us-34-advocates-lobby-for-long-overdue-expansion-of-two-lane-highway
Senate Committees meeting in Peoria, at Bradley

Are the Committee minutes made available? I am curious if other Road/Transportation projects came up for Western IL, n addition to the US 34 concerns highlighted in this report
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3467

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1421 on: April 15, 2019, 06:21:29 PM »

I looked on the Senate committee site and could not find any . There are the Peoria area projects 29 and 336 .as well as 67.
They had another meeting in Southern Illinois and no mention of 50or 51just the 127 project.
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ilpt4u

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1422 on: April 15, 2019, 07:49:37 PM »

I looked on the Senate committee site and could not find any . There are the Peoria area projects 29 and 336 .as well as 67.
They had another meeting in Southern Illinois and no mention of 50or 51just the 127 project.
Would like to see those minutes also.

Only the 127 upgrade aka Murphysboro-Columbia possible Expressway upgrade? Or another 127 project? Tho its really only 127 from Murphy to Pinckneyville. From there it makes its way NW over to Columbia. One of the routings may be straight up 127 to I-64 @ Nashville, IL

Other Southern IL projects possibly coming include the I-57 continued 6 Lane expansion, north of Marion towards Mt Vernon; I believe a new Ohio River Bridge in Cairo for US 51/60/62 is also eventually coming, maybe; The Shawnee Expressway/Parkway to build a 4 Lane Highway from IL 146/IL 3 Southern Junction near East Cape Girardeau east to at least I-57, and possibly even I-24

And while not road, Water Infrastructure would be nice, as it was quite disruptive last year when the main water pipe leaving Rend Lake was damaged - it is the fresh water source for a decent portion of Southern IL
« Last Edit: April 15, 2019, 07:58:08 PM by ilpt4u »
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3467

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1423 on: April 15, 2019, 10:41:06 PM »

There is a Senate task for open to the public looking at all options Pickneyville  no longer wants a bypass though. I think Shawnee was cancelled along with Gateway and Alton Godfrey. I was wondering if 50 and 34 met a similar fate. The article indicated 34 has not solved its Army corps cost problem. Also Sandavol made clear that if you don't vote for a gas tax or other revenue increase your projects are getting canceled.
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edwaleni

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Re: Illinois notes
« Reply #1424 on: April 15, 2019, 10:41:52 PM »

https://www.reviewatlas.com/news/20190411/us-34-advocates-lobby-for-long-overdue-expansion-of-two-lane-highway

This is interesting. They already have built a 4 lane bypass around Biggsville. But the rest is 2 lane, some on original ROW.

I struggle a little with this request because Illinois can't even get the Macomb Bypass finished to spec, and it is in the "priority" CKC Corridor.

But at least they are bringing up the right issues like safety, business use and not political platitudes.

Honestly, its getting a little nuts in Illinois now.  The coalitions to get better roads in their areas are starting to line up and Illinois is big time broke.

Even though the GA has been raiding the IDOT budget for several years, the revenue base for IDOT is ancient and based on very outdated expectations.  The new constitutional separation will help, but it won't be enough to make up for much of the increased costs IDOT will be facing. Not just constructions costs, but bonding costs. Illinois credit rating is junk status. Any infrastructure bill will require a new set of taxes to get a better financing rate on the bonds.

They doubled the income tax just to get their debt refinanced, but they still are months to many years behind in their bills and reimbursements.

Property taxes are getting so high in Illinois, that its starting to impact home values. The GA essentially wrote a massive home equity loan on the back of Illinois property owners and people are starting to leave because of it. As people leave and home values decline, this puts Illinois in a negative net worth.

Illinois is one of the few states that can pay a PE teacher with 30 years experience three times the median income of the district they work in.
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