Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294)

Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) Project

Project Overview

The Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) is being reconstructed and widened from Balmoral Avenue to 95th Street to provide congestion relief, reconstruct old infrastructure to meet current and future transportation demand and address regional needs. The project is scheduled from 2018 through 2026.

Construction in 2020 includes mainline reconstruction between the O’Hare Oasis and Wolf Road in Franklin Park. Work will be ongoing at two major bridges in this area: The Mile Long Bridge between Hodgkins and Willow Springs and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway Bridge in Hinsdale and Western Springs. At both locations, traffic, including freight and commuter rail traffic, will be maintained during construction.

In addition, advance work, utility work and improvements to ramps and local crossroad bridges will take place throughout the project corridor. This will include coordination with the Flagg Creek Water Reclamation District to relocate existing sewer lines adjacent to I-294 in advance of mainline roadway reconstruction and widening.

The Illinois Tollway has undertaken a detailed planning and refinement process to develop design and construction plans for the Central Tri-State Tollway Project. Major components of the project include reconfiguring the I-290/I-88 Interchange at I-294, rebuilding the Mile Long Bridge and the BNSF Railway Bridge, as well as integrating Flex Lanes and SmartRoad technology.

Read More

Concept Plan Map

Central Tri-State Concept Map
> View full-size map

Project Schedule Map

Central Tri-State Schedule Map
> View full-size map

EB Archer Avenue to SB I-294
Ramp Closure Detour

EB Archer Avenue to SB I-294 Ramp Closure Detour Map
> View full-size map

Construction Update (7/2/20)

I-294

Between Wolf Road and Balmoral Avenue, traffic is shifted in both directions. Traffic is expected to remain in this configuration through 2020. In addition, between Irving Park and Balmoral Avenue, northbound traffic is scheduled is reduced from five lanes to four lanes. Traffic is scheduled to remain in this reduced configuration through July. Additional lane closures will be scheduled as needed during overnight and off-peak hours for construction.

Between Electric Avenue and Lake Street/North Avenue, traffic is shifted in order to widen I-294 in both directions. Traffic is expected to remain in this configuration through 2020.

Between I-55 and Ogden Avenue, shoulders are closed and off-peak closures will be scheduled in various locations as needed for work on the relocation of Flagg Creek Water Reclamation District sewer lines. Traffic will remain in this configuration through August.

Between 88th Avenue and LaGrange Road, outside shoulders in both direction are closed and traffic is shifted to the right with reduced lane widths. The same number of lanes will be maintained on I-294. Traffic will remain in this configuration through the end of the year.

Please check the Daily Construction Alert for up-to-date closure information.

Local Roads
One lane in both directions on LaGrange Road is scheduled to close daily from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., as needed, for bridge construction.

Traffic on County Line Road is shifted for electrical work.

The ramp connecting eastbound Archer Avenue to southbound I-294 is closed with a posted detour directing traffic to continue east to Oak Grove Avenue and then routing traffic via westbound Archer Avenue to the ramp onto LaGrange Road, which provides access to southbound I-294. Traffic will remain in this configuration through the end of the year.

In addition, traffic is shifted on several ramps at the Archer Avenue Interchange through the end of the year, and lane closures on local roads will include:

  • 79th Street between Oak Grove Avenue and Archer Avenue will be reduced to two lanes in both directions.
  • Westbound Archer Avenue will be reduced to one lane between Oak Grove Avenue and westbound 79th Street ramp.
  • Eastbound Archer Avenue at LaGrange Road will be reduced by one lane, as will the ramp from eastbound Archer Avenue to 79th Street.
  • Northbound LaGrange Road will be reduced to one lane.

Customer Impacts

Shoulder closures and traffic shifts will be used to provide room for a work zone and safely accommodate traffic. Whenever possible, the Tollway uses traffic shifts and shoulders to keep as many lanes open during peak hours as were available before construction.

In addition, lane closures will be scheduled as needed on the Tollway and local roads to complete work.

A Regional Solution

The Central Tri-State Tollway is being reconstructed to increase capacity, reduce congestion and improve travel reliability. This work is part of the Tollway’s 15-year, $14 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future. More than 220,000 vehicles use this portion of the Tri-State Tollway daily.

A detailed planning and refinement process is underway to complete a design concept for rebuilding the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294). This process includes outreach efforts with customers, communities, businesses and partners to identify regional improvements and continue to refine the design details.

Visit the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) outreach page.

Sustainability

The Tollway is committed to building green and minimizing the environmental impact of construction by reducing, recycling and reusing materials.

In addition to reducing the cost of this work, reuse of these materials reduces the need for virgin asphalt materials and reduces energy consumption, greenhouse gases and the volume of material that would otherwise be sent to landfills.

Work Zone Safety

The Illinois Tollway is committed to ensuring that the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) and local roads remain safe for both drivers and workers during construction, which is part of the agency’s overall commitment to roadway safety.

Work zone speed limits are in effect in all construction zones 24/7 and drivers should continue to watch for changing traffic patterns and use caution, especially when workers are present. 

Visit the Tollway's Work Zone Safety page.