The Illinois Tollway is rebuilding and widening the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) as a 21st century, state-of-the-art corridor linking Rockford to O'Hare International Airport. The Jane Addams Memorial Tollway is part of Interstate 90 (I-90), the longest interstate in the United States, and covers 77 miles extending from near the Wisconsin border to the Kennedy Expressway. The I-90 corridor from Chicago to Rockford serves nearly one million travelers per day.
Most of the Tollway's I-90 infrastructure is more than 55 years old. Since it was originally built in the 1950s, residential and commercial growth have strained parts of I-90 beyond its capacity, increasing delays and weakening economic activity. Although it has been repeatedly resurfaced and repaired, the pavement is near the end of its useful life.
In 2011, the Illinois Tollway Board of Directors approved the 15-year, $12 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future. Move Illinois commits $2.5 billion to deliver a dramatic facelift to I-90 by rebuilding and widening 62 miles between Rockford and O'Hare with eight lanes from the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) to Randall Road and six lanes from Randall Road to I-39. In addition, the Tollway is accommodating transit options for the I-90 corridor - the first time in the agency's history.
The Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) Rebuilding and Widening Project is expected to save drivers up to 27 minutes on the average trip from Elgin to the Kennedy Expressway. In addition, the improved roadway will accommodate as many as 30,000 more vehicles per day and will save drivers $440 million annually due to reduced congestion and delays.
Further, the project is expected to create or sustain as many as 11,500 additional permanent jobs in the Chicago region. When complete, the corridor is projected to accommodate more than 15,000 trucks carrying 375,000 tons of freight per day.
The I-90 Rebuilding and Widening Project and other Move Illinois projects will enhance access to communities along the I-90 corridor through the construction of new and improved interchanges. The Tollway is improving interchanges and improving access at various locations including Lee Street, Elmhurst Road, Meacham Road, Roselle Road, Barrington Road, Illinois Route 25, Genoa Road and Irene Road. A new and improved full-access interchange at Illinois Route 47 opened in 2013.
The current plan for I-90 provides for interchange improvements for a potential economic investment of $390-$430 million.
As part of the I-90 Rebuilding and Widening Project, the Illinois Tollway is providing $240 million to integrate transit into the corridor today, as well as future transit expansion plans.
As part of the project, I-90 will feature the first Park & Ride facilities constructed on the Tollway. In addition, Pace will create new routes and expand existing service to improve transit services from Chicago to Elgin.
The new Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) will incorporate the latest technologies available on the market today, including active traffic management (ATM) on a portion of the roadway to make I-90 safer and more efficient for the benefit of Tollway customers.
The new I-90 will include flexible infrastructure to enable the Tollway to add new "smart" features as needed or as they become available in the years to come.
The Tollway is committed to "Building Green" and minimizing the environmental impact of construction by reducing, recycling and reusing materials, adopting a corridor approach to stormwater management and integrating energy efficient lighting. The Tollway is also undertaking projects that will protect and restore native prairie, forested fen and wetlands as part of the Tollway's wetland mitigation efforts for the I-90 corridor.
In addition, the I-90 corridor includes the Illinois Route 47 Interchange that opened in November 2013 as the first "green" interchange on the Tollway system. The project featured several new green construction initiatives, including a geothermal water piping system that makes use of the earth's natural heating and cooling abilities to help heat and cool nearby plaza buildings in a more cost-effective and sustainable manner, reflective roofs and trellised vegetation for plaza buildings to further reduce heating and cooling costs, as well as ramp shoulder pavement that will allow water to seep through and reduce stormwater runoff.
The Illinois Tollway is working closely with residents, communities, businesses, elected officials, transit and transportation organizations to plan for and implement improvements on I-90. As construction work moves forward, the Tollway continues to host public open house meetings, community outreach meetings and is working with residents and businesses to provide information and answer questions. The I-90 Rebuilding and Widening Project is building on the I-90 Corridor Planning Council's recommendations developed by the region's transit and transportation planning agencies, business community and environmental groups and elected leaders.
The Jane Addams Memorial Tollway is divided into two segments for planning, design and construction purposes: the western segment spanning approximately 37 miles from Rockford to Elgin and the eastern segment spanning 25 miles from Elgin to Chicago.
In 2014, major projects include the completion of the 37-mile western segment of the I-90 Rebuilding and Widening Project from Elgin to I-39 near Rockford with construction of the westbound lanes. Work on the 25-mile eastern segment of I-90 from Chicago to Elgin is scheduled for 2014-2016, with this year's work including noisewall and retaining wall installation, utility relocation and drainage work in advance of the roadway rebuilding and widening. Additionally, the westbound lanes between the Kennedy Expressway and I-294 will be rebuilt.
Construction also includes new and improved interchanges, as well as reconstruction of the Fox River Bridge and local crossroad bridges throughout the entire I-90 corridor to accommodate the new, wider roadway.
Westbound I-90 lane reduction - Kennedy Expressway to I-294
Westbound I-90 traffic between the Kennedy Expressway and the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) will be reduced to two lanes from early May until the end of the year. In this area, the roadway is too narrow to safely accommodate a traffic shift to maintain three lanes and a work zone.
For local alternate routes, take Higgins Road (Illinois Route 72) west and follow these routes:
- To go west on I-90, take the I-90 west entrance ramp at Devon Avenue.
- To go west on I-190, turn south onto Des Plaines River Road and take the I-190 west entrance ramp.
- To go south on I-294, turn south onto Des Plaines River Road. At Balmoral Avenue, turn west and then turn left onto the I-294 south entrance ramp.
In addition, during construction, drivers traveling from Chicago may also consider using the CTA Blue Line and connect to Pace bus routes as an alternate. Pace provides several bus routes with service along the I-90 corridor including Route 600, 606, 610, 616, 895. Detailed maps and schedules are available at www.pacebus.com.
Consider an alternate route between Chicago and Rockford
Ongoing construction will have an impact on travel throughout the 62-mile-long I-90 corridor. As a result, drivers may want to consider an alternate route. Depending on the destination, traffic traveling west to Rockford and Wisconsin can use the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88) to I-39 as an alternate route. Likewise, traffic traveling east toward Chicago and O'Hare International Airport can use the I-39/I-88 alternate route.
For complete details and maps, please visit "Project By Roadway" in the Construction/Planning section on the Tollway's website www.illinoistollway.com.
- Eastern Segment
- Western Segment
- Lee Street Interchange Project
- Meacham Road Interchange Project
- Roselle Road Interchange Project
- Barrington Road Interchange Project
- Local Crossroad Bridge Projects
- Illinois Route 25 Interchange Project
- Fox River Bridge Project
- Genoa Road Interchange Project
- Irene Road Interchange Project
- Business U.S. Route 20/State Street Interchange Project