The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) criticized the proposed Illiana Expressway project earlier this week, specifically casting doubt as to the proposed plan for the massive project.
Posted on its website earlier this week, CMAP suggests that the proposed roadway from Interstate 80 in Will County east to Interstate 65 in Indiana will cost significantly more than its backers admit, presents “a high level of (financial) risk” and is inconsistent with public forecasts for future economic and population growth in metropolitan Chicago.
Beyond that, the report says, the project, if completed, is likely to increase gross regional product by a fairly slim $425 million in 2040, barely a fifth of the $2 billion estimated by the Illinois Department of Transportation.
The report still needs to be approved by CMAP’s transportation committee before it’s put out for public comment, and it could later be amended or rejected by CMAP’s board and policy committee, on which IDOT is represented.
CMAP’s comments are rare for proposed major transportation projects and may give some insight as to the direction CMAP leans on the interstate highway. Before Illiana becomes a reality, it will need CMAP’s approval, among other requirements.
Full story here.
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