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Signaled entrances, turn lanes enhance access at MidAmerica Airport, Boeing facilities

A construction project that started on Aug. 1 by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will provide improved access to MidAmerica St. Louis Airport (BLV) and the new Boeing Production Facility currently being built next to the airport.

The project includes a new signalized entrance to the Boeing Production Facility, widening of Illinois Route 4 for turn lanes at this new entrance, signalization of the existing entrance to MidAmerica Airport at Airport Blvd., and improvements to the roadside drainage ditches along Illinois Route 4 in areas previously prone to flooding.

In Sept. 2021, Boeing began constructing a new aircraft production facility along Illinois Route 4 on MidAmerica St. Louis Airport property. Prior to this construction, in 2020, MidAmerica St. Louis Airport commissioned a Traffic Impact Study to determine the impacts to Illinois Route 4 of the proposed new Boeing Production Facility. The study indicated a need for traffic signals at the facility entrance and at the existing airport entrance.

“The continued growth in passenger traffic and anticipated growth in Boeing’s workforce here at the airport once the new facility is complete requires a proactive approach to improving this stretch of Illinois Route 4, and we commend IDOT for tackling the necessary improvements and funding 100% of the cost for the project,” said MidAmerica St. Louis Airport Director Bryan Johnson.

Johnson noted that the improved access to the airport will coincide with the completion of the new 45,000-square-foot terminal expansion, which is expected to open by late 2022 or early 2023. The new space includes a new security screening area, two additional boarding bridges, a service animal relief area, family restrooms, a nursing room, an expanded departure lounge, added room for concessions and renovations to accommodate people with disabilities.

“The new terminal paves the way for continued expansion here at MidAmerica Airport, and this project will help to ensure that the traveling public continues to have hassle-free access to the many benefits of flying through BLV,” added Johnson.

While ultimately the project will deliver enhanced access, IDOT has cautioned that the project will require daily lane closures on I-64 in the vicinity of the airport throughout the duration of the project, which is expected to be completed by Dec. 2022.

Motorists may experience traffic congestion with delays and should allow extra time for trips through this area, or when feasible consider using an alternate route. A news release from IDOT announcing the lane closures urges drivers to pay close attention to changed conditions and signs in the work zones, obey the posted speed limits, refrain from using mobile devices and be alert for workers and equipment.

The work is being completed by Keller Construction and Wissehr Electric. Horner & Shifrin, Inc., completed the design and will be providing construction inspection services.

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