Illinois' Transportation Infrastructure 'At a Crossroads'

Illinois’ Transportation Infrastructure ‘At a Crossroads’

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The Illinois Department of Transportation says Illinois’ road infrastructure is “at a crossroads.”

“Over the next six years, 40 percent of Illinois highways and one in seven bridges will be in unacceptable condition. The transit network’s bus and rail system will not be adequately overhauled, leading to less reliable and underutilized service. School and other key state construction projects will continue to lag behind and fall into disrepair,” IDOT says on its website.

So the organization has begun an “Illinois Infrastructure Listening Tour” aimed at setting transportation priorities for the next few years and beyond.

Depending on what part of Kane County you live in, the nearest scheduled listening event is May 1 in Lake County, May 11 in DuPage County and May 18 in DeKalb County. (See chart below.) That said, an IDOT press release says future dates and locations will be updated regularly at this page on

IDOT, in conjunction with the Illinois Capital Development Board, announced the start of a series of listening sessions over the next month to discuss the state’s infrastructure needs and the steps required to make sure the right investments are being made to keep Illinois competitive in a 21st century global economy.

The meetings will be held in multiple communities throughout the state, with a goal of presenting Gov. Bruce Rauner’s office and the General Assembly with a comprehensive package of recommendations for consideration this spring.

Secretary Randy Blankenhorn“With a world-class system of roads, transit systems, airports and railroads, Illinois is rich in transportation infrastructure, but we are at a crossroads. This asset makes us stand out, but it is beginning to deteriorate and in need of reinvestment,” said Acting Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn, who also is one of the speakers and panelists in the May 8 Kane County Leaders Summit.

“These meetings with the Capital Development Board are a listening tour to help us rebuild and craft a plan going forward that allows Illinois to continue to serve as the transportation hub of North America and build top-notch state facilities so we can grow our economy and improve our quality of life.”

According to an IDOT press release, the objective at each stop will be “to engage residents, businesses, local leaders and various stakeholders in identifying the infrastructure challenges we face and setting the priorities for investing now and for future generations.”

Among the topics that will be addressed are establishing needs and priorities, improving deteriorating roads, bridges and transit systems, providing better access across multiple transportation modes and reinvesting in state facilities, such as schools and state parks.

“I look forward to hearing the views and thoughts on transportation from the broad spectrum of people who make up our great state,” Blankenhorn said. “The time to rethink our transportation goals and priorities is now. Inaction is no longer an option.”

According to a CNBC report, Illinois ranks 27th in “America’s Top States for Business,” but third overall in infrastructure.

“Transportation is the asset that distinguishes Illinois from the rest of the country. Our roads, transit systems, railroads, airports and waterways make Illinois the transportation hub of North America and provide us with a global economic advantage,” IDOT says on its website.

The upcoming dialogue, emphasizing quality of life and economic growth, will establish priorities for future investment in our transportation system. These meetings are intended to be a listening tour, sparking discussion that ultimately leads to a package of recommendations that can be presented to Gov. Bruce Rauner and General Assembly.”

SOURCE: IDOT press release

Location Meeting Date Meeting Time Meeting Location Host Organization
Champaign April 27, 2015 1:00PM Hilton Garden Inn1501 S. Neil St.Champaign, IL Champaign County Chamber of Commerce
Macomb April 28, 2015 10:00AM Spoon River College Community Outreach Center (MidAmerica National Bank Conference Hall)2500 E. Jackson St.Macomb, IL Macomb Area Chamber of Commerce
Springfield April 28, 2015 2:30PM Hoogland Center for the Arts, Theater III420 S. Sixth St.Springfield, IL Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce
Ottawa April 29, 2015 8:30AM Ottawa City Hall301 W. Madison St.Ottawa, IL Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce
Dixon April 29, 2015 11:00AM KSB Hospital (Private Dining Room)403 E. 1st St.Dixon, IL Dixon Area Chamber of Commerce
Bloomington/Normal April 30, 2015 2:00PM Bloomington City Council Chamber109 East Olive St.Bloomington, IL McLean County Chamber of Commerce
Lake County May 1, 2015 8:00AM University Center of Lake County1200 University Center Dr.Grayslake, IL Lake County Transportation Alliance
McHenry County May 1, 2015 2:00 PM 1257 N. Green StMcHenry, IL McHenry County Chamber of Commerce
Mt. Vernon May 4, 2015 10:30AM Mt. Vernon City Hall1100 Main St.Mt. Vernon, IL Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce
Peoria May 4, 2015 1:00PM Peoria Chamber of Commerce100 SW Water St.Peoria, IL Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce
Collinsville May 5, 2015 9:00AM Gateway Convention Center1 Gateway Dr.Collinsville, IL Collinsville Chamber of Commerce
Carbondale May 5, 2015 1:00PM TBD Carbondale Chamber of Commerce
Alton May 5, 2015 2:00PM Lewis & Clark Community College (Advance Technology Center) Trimpe Building5800 Godfrey Rd.Godfrey, IL River Bend Growth Association
Quincy May 6, 2015 10:00AM Oakley-Lindsay Civic Center300 Civic Center PlazaQuincy, IL Quincy Area Chamber of Commerce
North Cook County May 7, 2015 9:00AM Village of Wheeling2 Community Blvd.Wheeling, IL Northwest Municipal Conference
Danville May 7, 2015 9:30AM Vermilion County Board Room, 2nd FloorCounty Annex6 N. Vermilion St.Danville, IL Vermilion Advantage
Taylorville May 7, 2015 1:30PM Taylorville City Hall115 N. Main St.Taylorville, IL Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce
South Cook County May 7, 2015 4:00PM South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association1904 W. 174th St.East Hazel Crest, IL South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association
DuPage County May 11, 2015 10:00AM DuPage Chamber of Commerce Conf. Room306 Main St.West Chicago IL 60185 Dupage County Chamber of Commerce
Decatur May 11, 2015 10:00AM TBD Greater Decatur Chamber of Commerce
ChicagoAdmission fee may apply May 13, 2015 8:00AM Infrastructure WeekUnion League Club of Chicago65 W. Jackson Blvd.Chicago, IL Metropolitan Planning Council
Rockford May 14, 2015 3:00PM RMAP Headquarters315 North Main St.Rockford, IL Rockford Chamber of Commerce
DeKalb May 18, 2015 2:00PM City Hall Council Chambers200 S. 4th StDeKalb, IL DeKalb Chamber of Commerce
Quad Cities (Moline) May 19, 2015 11:00AM WIU Quad Cities Riverfront CampusMoline, IL Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce
Will CountyAdmission fee may apply May 21, 2015 11:30AM Joliet Country Club1009 Spencer Rd.Joliet, IL Joliet Chamber of Commerce
Kankakee May 21, 2015 2:30PM 1137 E. 5000 N. RoadBourbonnais, IL River Valley METRO Mass Transit District
Galena May 22, 2015 1:00PM DeSoto House Hotel230 S. Main St.Galena, IL Galena Chamber of Commerce
Effingham Still developing, check back soon! TBD TBD TBD


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