Illinois Tollway Approves 2021 Budget


The Illinois Tollway Board of Directors today approved a balanced 2021 Budget with $1.42 billion in revenue allocated to fund maintenance and operations, debt service transfers and capital investments for the 294-mile system.

The 2021 Budget will allow the Tollway to commit $1.53 billion in capital spending, including funding for the 10th year of the agency’s 15-year, $14 billion Move Illinois capital program.

“This balanced budget recognizes the economic challenges that are continuing with the COVID-19 pandemic and ensures we are spending our customers’ money wisely to maintain our system and services,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director José Alvarez. 

“Simultaneously, our spending plan is supporting jobs throughout the region as we maintain top-quality infrastructure, improve service and advance diversity of businesses and workers.”

In 2021 estimated revenues include $1.4 billion from tolls and evasion recovery, $10 million from investment income and $10 million from concessions and miscellaneous revenue. The Tollway also plans to issue $600 million in new bonds in 2021 to provide funding for new and future capital program investments.

The 2021 Budget allocates nearly $1.04 billion for direct funding and debt service on capital investments, as well as $380 million for maintenance and operations – the same as budgeted in 2020.

Funding for annual maintenance and operations activities includes $104 million in Business Systems and Toll Operations to support and tolling and customer service, $35.6 million in State Police for safety services, $103.1 million in Engineering and Facilities and Fleet to support roadway maintenance and traffic operations, as well as $26.8 million in Information Technology.

The Tollway’s 2021 Capital Program calls for investing $1.53 billion with $312.2 million budgeted for systemwide roadway and bridge repairs to keep the existing Tollway system in good repair, as well as along with funding for key projects including:

$451.4 million to continue planning and advance construction for the new I-490 Tollway and new interchanges connecting to the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90), Tri-State Tollway (I-294), the Illinois Route 390 Tollway, as well as providing direct access in and out of O’Hare International Airport as part of the Elgin O’Hare Western Access Project

$690.4 million to continue design and reconstruction of the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) Project

$78 million for construction at the I-294/I-57 Interchange
The 2021 Budget includes an increase of 11 percent in projected revenue over revised 2020 estimates but is a 7.8 decrease from the 2020 estimates pre-COVID-19. This includes an annual commercial truck toll rate increase previously approved by the Tollway Board in 2008. There is no toll increase planned for passenger vehicles.

The 2021 Budget is posted on the Illinois Tollway website for public viewing.

About Move Illinois
The Illinois Tollway’s 15-year, $14 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future, is improving mobility, relieving congestion, reducing pollution, creating as many as 120,000 jobs and linking economies throughout the region. The first nine years of Move Illinois are on schedule and within budget, delivering the new Illinois Route 390 Tollway and a rebuilt and widened Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) with its new SmartRoad corridor, as well as opening a new interchange connecting the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) to I-57. Progress continues on projects addressing the remaining needs of the existing Tollway system, delivering the new I-490 Tollway Project and reconstruction of the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294).

About the Illinois Tollway
The Illinois Tollway is a user-fee system that receives no state or federal funds for maintenance and operations. The agency maintains and operates 294 miles of roadways in 12 counties in Northern Illinois, including the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88), the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355), the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90), the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80) and the Illinois Route 390 Tollway.