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'It's Gonna Be a Bear' — Plainfield Braces for Route 30 Widening

Get ready for delays: The project will widen the road from Route 59 to the I-55 interchange.

Plainfield Mayor Mike Collins (center) at the 2011 ribbon cutting for the newly completed Route 59. Credit: Patch file photo
Plainfield Mayor Mike Collins (center) at the 2011 ribbon cutting for the newly completed Route 59. Credit: Patch file photo
As he took stock of 2013, Mayor Mike Collins looked ahead to the rest of 2014 at last week's Plainfield Area Chamber of Commerce "State of the Village" luncheon.


One thing he wasn't necessarily looking forward to?

The Illinois Department of Transportation's planned Route 30 improvements, which will widen the road from Route 59 to the I-55 interchange.

"It's gonna be a bear," Collins said of the project, which will likely take nearly two years to complete.

Plainfield Director of Public Works Allen Persons said right now, the project remains in the property acquisition stage. According to IDOT, the project is slated to go out to bid this spring. However, Persons said depending on how long property acquisition takes, bidding may not happen until the summer.

Once contractors are hired, the project is expected to take about 18 months, according to Persons.

In 2012, IDOT officials gave village trustees a preview of the project, estimated to cost $40 million. The project calls for:

  • From the west Frontage Road to Renwick Road – Four lanes, plus a two-way left-term lane and a 10-foot-wide multi-use path.
  • From Renwick Road to Union Street – Two lanes plus a two-way left-turn lane and an eight-foot-wide multi-use path.
  • From Union Street to Route 59 – Two lanes, plus a two-way left-turn lanes, along with an eight-foot-wide sidewalk to the west and a seven-foot-wide sidewalk to the east.
Collins urged residents to have patience once work begins.

"This will be an asset, but we all remember about Route 59," referring to the three-year construction project that created headaches for drivers and businesses along Route 59. That project was finished in July 2011.

Route 30 construction crews will have to work around Plainfield-area wildlife, Collins said. From April to August, no construction will be permitted north of Renwick Road due to breeding season at the Lake Renwick Heron Rookery.

"It will be time well spent," Collins said of the project, "but you're going to have to bear with us."
joe January 20, 2014 at 09:24 AM
I wonder why IDOT didn't make a entrance ramp to Southbound I-55 off of 126? You can enter I-55 Eastbound, but no South entrance. 59 will be a nightmare during this much needed, and overdue project.
Ed Arter January 20, 2014 at 09:31 AM
Normal, "slowski", Utility relocation will delay any hope of a timely completion.
Kathi Julison January 20, 2014 at 10:02 AM
Is there any plan to finish the access to safe paths and crossings for bicyclers and walkers . . . that could help relieve some of the problems. In particular: attempting to use Feeney/Frasier Rd to cross Rt 59 and the 4 block unprotected (no path/no sidewalk) roadway leading to/from Rt 59 is dangerous on a good day. The high school buses drop off students in the roadyway and the students have to walk in the road to the streets leading into Feeney. There are no sidewalks for several long blocks for safe passage. The traffic down Feeney and Frasier that will go through this area during the construction (and current usage) is very heavy.
Ed Arter January 20, 2014 at 11:57 AM
Try-----http://www.dot.il.gov/road/will.htm---for IDOT updates. Nothing on Rt. 30 yet, stay tuned in.
Mike Keniley January 20, 2014 at 11:58 AM
Kathi...have you discussed the Feeney/Frasier Rd/Rt 59 issue with the school district? Is there an alternate location to pick up & drop off students? I'm not being argumentative...just wondering. The school administrators should have some clout with the Village administrators...especially when it impacts resident's (student's) safety.
S H January 20, 2014 at 12:45 PM
This expansion has been proposed for decades. I hate to see it ruin the properties from Renwick to 30/59, including The Rookery. The berm between Rt 30 and the bowling alley and the thwarted townhouse development (which was proposed for where the park is across from the cemetery) were all put in place to protect the birds. Plainfield should have gone with a traffic route around town a long ago.
Kelsey Nicole Goodger January 20, 2014 at 02:53 PM
The dont have room for extra ramps off of 55 for the 126th exit. And i think you guys meant turn instead of term. But thank god there finally widening that road
joe January 20, 2014 at 03:43 PM
Well Kelsey, if you Google that area of 126 and I-55, it sure looks like there is more than enough room for a exit ramp to join I-55. Also I think you meant they, and not The.
Hector January 20, 2014 at 06:32 PM
Great catch Tony. The 143rd street extension would be an alternative to widening Rt 30. The city proposed a southbound I-55 ramp. The idea was to designate the extension Rt 30 to divert through traffic from Rt 59 and the existing Rt 30. It would be a win win, no need to widen the existing road and eliminate a majority of traffic in town.
Kathi Julison January 20, 2014 at 07:11 PM
In the meantime, is there a plan to help manage the effects of this project on daily living in Plainfield . . . remembering that there was no way to get to town or through town during the last project. In the Lily Cache and Peerless subdivisions bordered by Rt 30, Rt 59, and Renwick Rd there are no alternative routes to get to services in Plainfield. I would like to hear and see the managment plans.

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