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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Steve Kulm
FEBRUARY 10, 2003
Office: 847/705-4079
TTY: 847/705-4710


I-290 / IL 53 Reconstruction Set to Begin March 1, Project Includes Extended Life Pavement and Auxiliary Lanes

SCHAUMBURG— With the goal of building a roadway that will last until near mid-century before major repairs are needed, the Illinois Department of Transportation will begin the reconstruction of I-290 / IL 53 March 1.

The $62.3 million effort will rebuild and improve a four mile section of the expressway between Thorndale Avenue and Golf Road (IL 58) in the northwest suburban communities of Schaumburg. Elk Grove, and Itasca. It is the largest Chicago area project IDOT will be working on during the 2003 road construction season.

The project will remove and replace the existing four lanes of traffic in each direction. Many of the entrance and exit ramps will be reconstructed and resurfaced.

"Some of the pavement in this area dates back to when the expressway first opened in the early 1970s," said Dirk Fuqua who oversees all state road construction for IDOT in the Chicago region. "It is now time to build a new roadway from the ground up and to do it with improved design standards."

The major improvement is aimed at doubling the life expectancy of the new pavement from the current standard of 20 years to at least 40 years. This is one of two demonstration projects statewide testing the Extended Life Pavement design.

The new, longer lasting pavement uses better quality source materials and engineering details to make the need for major repairs as remote as possible. The main goal is to counteract the damage and stress on the pavement caused by heavy traffic volumes and the repetitive ‘freeze-thaw cycle’ that characterizes Chicago’s harsh winter seasons.

While initial construction costs for this design are higher, IDOT seeks to save money in the long run by reducing maintenance expenses.

Another significant design improvement is the addition of auxiliary lanes. These lanes extend only from the entrance ramp at one interchange to the exit ramp at the next interchange. They are not ‘through’ or ‘travel’ lanes, but they will aid in reducing congestion by making it easier for vehicles to enter and exit the expressway.

An auxiliary lane will be added in each direction between Higgins Road (IL 72) and Biesterfield Road and between Biesterfield Road and Thorndale Avenue.

During construction, traffic will be reduced from four lanes to three lanes in each direction. Also, the Higgins Road (IL 72) entrance ramp to northbound I-290 / IL 53 will be closed for the entire project.

Additional information regarding this project can be found on the new IDOT web site at www.illinoisroads.info

The contractor for this project is Walsh Construction of Chicago.

I-290 / IL 53 Project Schedule


STAGE I: March to June

All traffic switched to southbound lanes. Three lanes maintained in each direction.

Higgins Road (IL 72) entrance ramp to northbound I-290 / IL 53 closed until October.

  • Reconstruct northbound lanes from Thorndale Ave to Woodfield Rd
  • Reconstruct/resurface northbound entrance/exit ramps at Higgins Rd (IL 72)
  • Reconstruct/resurface northbound entrance/exit ramps at Biesterfield Rd
  • Reconstruct/resurface northbound entrance ramp from westbound Thorndale Ave
  • Reconstruct northbound entrance ramp from Woodfield Rd
  • Resurface northbound express local lanes from Woodfield Rd to Golf Rd (IL 58)
STAGE II: June and July

All traffic returns to normal configuration. Three lanes maintained in each direction.

  • Reconstruct the inside lanes of both north-and southbound I-290 / IL 53
STAGE III: July to October

All traffic switched to northbound lanes. Three lanes maintained in each direction.

  • Reconstruct southbound lanes from Higgins Rd (IL 72) to Thorndale Ave
  • Construct new bridge deck for the southbound bridge over IL 72
  • Reconstruct and resurface the southbound entrance ramp from IL 72
  • Reconstruct and resurface the southbound entrance/exit ramps at Biesterfield Rd
  • Reconstruct and resurface the southbound exit ramp to Thorndale Ave
STAGE IV: October and November

All traffic returns to normal configuration.

  • Construct median barrier wall.

  • Install overhead electronic message signs along southbound lanes near Biesterfield Rd and near U.S. 14 (Northwest Highway).
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