Reconstruction of key Metro East road awarded for technology and innovation
SPRINGFIELD – The reconstruction of Interstate 255 in the Metro East won top honors among Midwest states in the America’s Transportation Awards. The project, one of the first under Gov. Pritzker’s historic, bipartisan Rebuild Illinois capital program, fixed one of the worst roads in the state quicker, safer and cheaper by closing the work zone to all traffic for nine months instead of multiple construction seasons.
“We have long prided ourselves on being one of the most innovative departments of transportation in the country,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman. “This award reinforces that reputation and helps to remind the public that IDOT is constantly employing new and effective ways to modernize our infrastructure while delivering Rebuild Illinois.”
The overall project rehabilitated and resurfaced approximately seven miles of I-255 from Collinsville Road to Illinois 15. All of the repairs were completed in 2020 instead of the four years that would have been needed if construction was staged, reducing the estimated project cost by $14 million to a total of $67 million.
The department also deployed different technologies to complete the project, such as drones, traffic counters and traffic reporting services to monitor and evaluate travel times, problem spots and traffic volumes. The information helped to provide valuable feedback to the public regarding underutilized alternate routes, saving time and money and while completing the project ahead of schedule.
Sponsored by American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials, AAA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, America’s Transportation Awards recognize state DOTs for projects that make their communities better places to live, work, and play.
“As the COVID-19 pandemic forced many Americans to drastically change work patterns, state DOT employees continued the harrowing work of keeping our transportation systems operating safely and efficiently for those who had to travel, whether by vehicle or other means,” said Jim Tymon, AASHTO’s executive director. “These awards highlight just a few of the projects and programs across the country that had a positive impact on quality of life during an otherwise uncertain time.”