Our team was the lead design firm of the Illinois Tollway’s $4 billion improvement of the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294), an ambitious project aimed at improving infrastructure and traffic flow. This major Chicagoland roadway received an expansive list of improvements including the addition of a fifth travel lane in each direction, reconstruction of the median to accommodate flex lanes, the rehabilitation of multiple bridges, and more. Our Phase II design engineering services were performed for the widening and rehabilitation of nearly two miles of I-294, and as we went into the third and final year of construction, our work included the rehabilitation of the dual (over one-half mile long) mainline bridges over the Bensenville Rail Yard and the implementation of SmartRoad technology.
The proposed improvements included the rehabilitation of the two 28-span, half-mile long bridges over the Bensenville Rail Yard, rehabilitation of the Wolf Road bridge over I-294 and the reconstruction of the O’Hare Oasis ramps.
The proposed improvements include the installation of retaining walls and noise abatement walls, drainage improvements, the implementation of Intelligent Transportation System infrastructure, new roadway lighting, regulatory floodway/floodplain impacts and the relocation/protection of existing utilities.
Under newly developed Illinois Tollway guidance for soil waste screening, we completed special waste screening which included collecting soil samples as well as development of a soil management memo characterizing soils for disposal. In addition to the soil management memo, we evaluated potential environmental concerns with possible acquisition of right-of-way from an adjoining landfill property.
A detailed traffic staging plan was prepared to depict the maintenance of four lanes of mainline traffic in each direction along with the maintenance of ramp movements throughout the duration of construction. The project was phased over a three-year period from 2020 to 2022 and accommodated the staging of the new I-490 Tollway Interchange to the south.
A feasibility study was conducted for the future widening and reconstruction of the Bensenville Yard Bridge structures. The study included development of structural and geometric alternatives for new alignments that would facilitate staged construction. The alternatives were evaluated and a cost estimate was developed to prepare for future coordination with the railroad.