Illinois DOT Announces $2.2 Billion for 2019 Highway Improvement Program
The FY 2019 Annual Highway Improvement Program provides $2.2 billion of the $11.05 billion included for highways in the fiscal Year 2019-2024 Proposed Highway Improvement Program. Also included are projects totaling $69 million in appropriations from previous fiscal years that are scheduled to be implemented in FY 2019. As a result, the FY 2019 Highway Improvement Program totals $2.269 billion.
A total of 502 miles of highway and 184 bridges will be improved or constructed through the FY 2019 program. Safety and traffic improvements are scheduled at 61 locations. The FY 2019 program includes $1.534 billion for projects on the state highway system and $735 million for projects on the local system.
The program priorities are to maintain and preserve our existing roads and bridges, or assets, with a special emphasis on the National Highway System (NHS) and structurally deficient bridges on that system. There are more than 7,900 miles of roads and 4,815 bridges (totaling 74,100,561 square feet of deck area) on the NHS.1 The department’s focus on the NHS is due in large part to new federal performance rules that require state departments of transportation to prioritize its condition. New federal performance measures were developed to “increase the accountability and transparency of the federal-aid highway program and provide for a framework to support improved investment decision making through a focus on performance outcomes for key national transportation goals.”2
The Federal Highway Administration, through the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), is also requiring states to develop and implement a risk- based Transportation Asset Management Plan, or TAMP, for the NHS to improve or preserve the condition of the assets and the performance of the system. Having an asset management plan means that states are required to consider the lifecycle cost of roads and bridges. The projects in the FY 2019 state program that improve the condition of pavements and bridges have been selected within the parameters of the initial asset management plan. The department has developed an initial TAMP, and the fully compliant plan is due June 30, 2019.
Focusing on asset management has allowed IDOT to change from a “worst-first” philosophy to a proactive approach to preserving our assets. The traditional “worst-first” strategy meant that IDOT prioritized assets that had deteriorated past the point of preservation, needing more costly repairs or total replacement. Under asset management, the strategy is to develop and implement a data-driven decision process that supports the use of analytical tools and lifecycle strategies to reduce the rate of system deterioration as cost effectively as possible. Based on current funding levels, it is anticipated that the condition of some roads will continue to worsen over time. However, the department will strive to maintain its assets at a safe and serviceable level.
Asset management drives the department to focus on five core areas in categorizing projects: road maintenance, bridges, safety/system modernization, system expansion and a system support category that includes assets and activities supporting the transportation network.
Core Work Categories
The implementation of asset management has necessitated several changes to the FY 2019 state program, as federal asset management rules require that IDOT show a commitment to preserving and maintaining the existing system. The department’s focus has been modified to concentrate on five core areas in categorizing projects: road maintenance, bridges, safety/system modernization, system expansion and a system support category that includes assets and activities supporting the transportation network. Much of the funding in the FY 2019 state program will be used to maintain and preserve the state’s existing system of roads and bridges.
Roadway Maintenance includes reconstruction, resurfacing, widening and pavement preservation projects.
Bridges consists of bridge replacement and rehabilitation, minor structure repairs and preservation projects. Bridge information
will be discussed in terms of square feet of deck area instead of number of bridges.
Safety/System Modernization consists of projects such as interchange reconstruction, interstate safety projects, and traffic and safety improvements.
System Expansion includes major projects, such as new bridges on new alignment, bridge replacements that increase capacity, additional lanes, new interchanges, and strategic regional arterials.
System Support consists of rest area and weigh station maintenance, miscellaneous districtwide projects, contract maintenance, statewide engineering or other statewide items, such as pavement markings, guardrail delineation, sign truss work and median barriers.
The following notable NHS system projects are included in the annual program:
Interchange reconstruction and bridge replacement at Interstate 80 and U.S. 30 (Lincoln Highway) in New Lenox at a cost of $43 million funded through the Illinois Competitive Freight Program;
Replacement and bridge improvements along Interstate 80 from Illinois 53 (Chicago Street) to Rowell Avenue in Will County at a cost of $41.2 million;
Continuation of the bridge replacement, rehabilitation and bridge improvements at Interstate 290/Congress Parkway (Jane Byrne Interchange) in Chicago at a cost of $114.3 million;
Widening, resurfacing, traffic signal modernization and ADA improvements on Illinois 132 from Munn Road to Deerpath Drive in Lindenhurst at a cost of $14 million;
Bridge replacement, bridge improvements and lighting on Interstate 74 over the Mississippi River in Rock Island County at a cost of $82.1 million;
Resurfacing, bridge improvements and culvert repairs on Interstate 57 north of the Kankakee River Bridge to one mile south of the Illinois 50 Interchange in Bourbonnais at a cost of $11.2 million;
Resurfacing Interstate 39 from the McLean County line to one mile north of U.S. 24 in Woodford County at a cost of $11.2 million;
Bridge replacement and ramp modifications on Interstate 150 (Eastbound War Memorial Drive) over the Illinois River in Peoria at a cost of $193.2 million;
Bridge replacement of the Mississippi River Bridge at U.S. 54 and Louisiana, Missouri, in Pike County for a cost of $16.0 million;
- Additional lanes on Interstate 57 south of Johnston City to south of West Frankfort in Williamson and Franklin counties at a cost of $13.1 million funded through a TIGER grant.
Of the 55 NHS bridges programmed, 33 are structurally deficient. Following are a few of the significant NHS bridge projects included in the program:
- Bridge replacement and reprofiling on Illinois 56 at Hankes Road in Kane County at a cost of $12.5 million;
- Bridge rehabilitation, ADA improvements and lighting on Western Avenue at Cal Sag Channel in Blue Island at a cost of $10.7
- Bridge superstructure and bridge widening on Illinois 17 at Baker Creek east of Kankakee at a cost of $3.8 million;
- Bridge rehabilitation on U.S. 24 over Illinois 116 in East Peoria at a cost of $4.8 million;
- Bridge replacement at Interstate 57 under Bradley Avenue west of Champaign at a cost of $3.7 million;
- Bridge replacement on U.S. 50 over Otter Pond Ditch east of Illinois 1 interchange in Lawrence County at a cost of $6.2 million;
- Bridge rehabilitation and bridge joint repair at Interstate 55/64 at Poplar Street Collector-Distributer east of Poplar Street Bridge
- in St. Clair County at a cost of $10.6 million;
- Bridge replacement on Interstate 24 north of U.S. 45 in Massac County at a cost of $5.6 million.
The FY 2019 Highway Improvement Program includes improvements on local streets and highways using federal funds. A portion of the federal funding is allocated based on population to local agencies throughout the state. The local program provides $735 million to fund improvements on 244 miles of road and 97 bridges, along with 19 traffic and safety improvements. In addition, $7 million is included in the program to help local governments upgrade designated truck routes.
Under the current asset management requirements, IDOT is required to report on the condition of the total NHS, regardless of who maintains it. Of the 244 miles of road and 97 bridges programmed, seven miles and three bridges are located on the NHS, respectively. The three bridges total 110,829 square feet and are structurally deficient. IDOT will work with its local agency partners to develop a plan to address the maintenance of the locally maintained miles and square feet of bridge deck area to determine how their plans impact IDOT’s ability to meet its goals.
The FY 2019 Highway Improvement Program also provides $50.8 million in state funds to assist local governments that are not listed in this document. These funds are allocated directly to local governments by formula. The breakdown is as follows:
$10 million for needy townships
$4 million for high-growth cities
$21.8 million to counties less than one million in population
$15 million for the local township bridge program
Approximately $617.5 million of state motor fuel tax funds will be directly distributed to municipalities, counties and townships for administration and the repair of local roads and bridges during FY 2019. This distribution is in addition to the state’s $2.269 billion
FY 2019 annual program.