Quinn signs billion dollar deal

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

Governor Pat Quinn was joined by Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) officials April 15 to unveil a $12.84 billion Multi-Year Highway Improvement Program for Fiscal Years 2011-2016. The proposed program aims to preserve and maintain the state’s highway system of roads and bridges, upgrade facilities for congestion mitigation and safety improvements and expand the system to help spur economic development in Illinois. The entire Multi-Year Plan (MYP) is expected to create an estimated 167,000 direct jobs over the next six years.

“I have made it my priority to invest in our state’s infrastructure, which will spark economic growth in local communities across the state by putting more people to work while improving public safety,” said Governor Quinn.  “With the recent passage of Illinois Jobs Now!, the first jobs and capital program in over a decade, we look forward to the most robust construction season in the state’s history and the benefits it will bring to Illinois.”

The MYP contains multiple projects in Central Illinois, including six miles of resurfacing on Interstate 55 from 0.1 mile north of Fancy Creek in Sangamon County to Logan County line. The proposed program also includes additional lanes for 2.8 miles, a retaining wall, land acquisition and utility adjustments on Wabash Avenue/Old US 36 from Moffet Street in Curran to Koke Mill Road in Springfield.

The $12.84 billion highway improvement program for FY 2011-2016 MYP is based upon conservative estimates of federal, state and local funding, with $7.292 billion in federal funds, $4.888 billion in state funds including $142 million in bonds from the Governor Quinn’s Illinois Jump Start Capital Plan, $2.49 billion for the Illinois Jobs Now! bond program and $660 million in local funds.

The six-year highway improvement program includes $10.103 billion for improvements to the state highway system with $2.737 billion available for local roads.

“We are very excited about what the next few years will bring to Illinois,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Gary Hannig. “We are working diligently to get many of these projects started to support economic development and improve our state’s infrastructure in communities statewide.”

The FY 2011-2016 Proposed Highway Improvement Program will provide funding to maintain 4,739 miles of highways and replace or rehabilitate 763 bridges. The entire FY 2011-2016 MYP is available online at the Illinois Department of Transportation website at www.dot.il.gov.