Travel Midwest News Items

Filter Announcements

RSS 2.0 News Feed: RSS feed of Announcements

Virtual online open house begins tomorrow to highlight Highway 10 Rum River Bridge replacement project in Anoka

ROSEVILLE, Minn. –The public is invited to participate in a virtual online open house beginning Tuesday, July 14, to learn about upcoming improvements to Highway 10 and the Rum River Bridge in Anoka.

Beginning in 2022, MnDOT plans to replace the Highway 10 bridge over the Rum River and repair other bridges along the Highway 10 corridor in Anoka. Additional funds are also being sought to make other improvements near the bridge, including reconstruction of the Ferry St. (Highway 47/Highway 10/169) Interchange and to build auxiliary lanes from Ferry St. to 7th Ave.

The online virtual open house will allow participants the opportunity to learn more about the project, view the current and proposed roadway layout, ask questions and give their feedback. The public is invited to view the open house materials when it is convenient for them through mid-August.  A link to the online open house can be found on the project website at:

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) invites and encourages participation by all. We believe everyone should have an equal opportunity to enjoy the programs, services and activities we provide.

7/13/2020 7:57 PM (Updated 7/13/2020 7:57 PM)
Mowing operations taking place throughout state
The Illinois Department of Transportation is reminding the public that seasonal mowing operations have resumed throughout the state. Motorists should be prepared to slow down, put down the devices, avoid all distractions and proceed with caution when encountering mowing equipment and personnel.
In recent years, IDOT has revised its mowing practices to help create and maintain habitat for pollinators, including the monarch butterfly, the official state insect of Illinois since 1975 and at risk of being declared endangered. Pollinators play a vital role in the Illinois ecosystem and agricultural economy by aiding in reproduction of flowers, fruits and vegetables.
Last year, IDOT began following the Illinois Monarch Project Mowing Guidelines for Pollinators, establishing the most extensive mowing period from July 1 to Aug. 15. Currently, in addition to roadsides, standard maintenance mowing is taking place as needed around culverts, ditches, traffic control devices and other IDOT structures.
By timing when mowing takes place and reducing the amount of land being mowed, IDOT is encouraging the growth of critical plant species, such as milkweed, the only food source for monarch caterpillars.
Here's a short video about IDOT's mowing schedules and its work with pollinators:
For its efforts, IDOT has won national honors from several organizations, including Pheasants Forever and the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign
Follow IDOT on Twitter at on construction and traffic information are available at


7/9/2020 4:57 PM (Updated 7/9/2020 9:50 PM)
Interactive website for I-55 Access Study

 The Illinois Department of Transportation, in partnership with the City of Joliet, is inviting the public to the learn more and comment about the preliminary engineering and environmental studies for the I-55 Access Study. Instead of hosting a regular public meeting, IDOT will share details and encourage public participation through an enhanced project website:

The purpose of the outreach effort is to obtain public input, present the preferred alternative for each of the projects identified by the I-55 Access Study, provide a status updates and discuss next steps.
The I-55 Access Study area is in western Will County, primarily within Shorewood and Joliet. The study area covers approximately 6.5 square miles, bounded by Interstate 80, US-52 (Jefferson Street), Houbolt Road and River Road. 
Based on earlier public meetings, IDOT has identified a recommended preferred alternative that includes four improvements:
In addition to the website, outreach efforts will include a mailed newsletter and the opportunity to ask questions and leave comments to IDOT’s staff over the phone at (847) 705-4087.
Comments received by Aug.4 will become part of the official public outreach record.
Written comments can be mailed to:
Illinois Department of Transportation
201 Center Court
Schaumburg, IL 60196-1096
Attn: Jessica Feliciano in Bureau of Programming
People with disabilities needing accommodations can contact Jessica Feliciano at (847) 705-4087. Also, IDOT’s TTY/TTD number is (800) 526-0844 or 711. TTY users in Spanish can call (800) 501-0864 or 711. The Telebraille line is (877) 526-6670.
7/9/2020 11:41 AM (Updated 7/9/2020 11:41 AM)
Interactive website for IL-43 study

The Illinois Department of Transportation is inviting the public to learn more and comment about proposed improvements to IL-43 (Harlem Avenue) from 63rd to 65th streets in Chicago and Summit through an enhanced project website:

On the website, the public can see a project overview, including proposed alternatives that would separate the Belt Railway Company of Chicago tracks from Harlem Avenue at one or both of the 63rd and 65th street locations, as well as more information on the potential for improvements to 65th Street that will continue to be studied.          
If members of the public have additional questions or wish to discuss the project after visiting the website, they can provide contact information and a project team member will follow up.
Written comments can be mailed to:
Illinois Department of Transportation
201 Center Court
Schaumburg, Ill.  60196-1096
Attn: Griselda Monsivais in Bureau of Programming
All comments received by Aug. 15 become part of the official public meeting record.
Anyone without internet access may contact Steve Schilke, Project and Environmental Studies Section Chief, at (847) 636-2343 for more information. Anyone needing special assistance can contact Griselda Monsivais at (847) 705-4716.
7/9/2020 11:34 AM (Updated 7/9/2020 11:34 AM)
Illinois Tollway Deploys Hot Weather Patrols to Assist Customers During Extreme Heat


 Additional road patrols bolster H.E.L.P. trucks and State Police District 15

The Illinois Tollway has launched around-the-clock Hot Weather Patrols to more quickly locate and assist customers stranded along its roads during the dangerously high temperatures and humidity expected to continue into the weekend.
To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the trucks used for these patrols have been modified with plastic partitions and also are stocked with masks, hand sanitizer and gloves for motorists who may need to wait inside the truck or be transported to a different location.
The Illinois Tollway typically operates Hot Weather Patrols whenever temperatures or heat indexes indicate conditions could be hazardous for stranded drivers. The 24-hour patrols search for drivers stranded in disabled vehicles and respond to calls that come in to *999 motorist assistance, Illinois Tollway dispatch or Illinois State Police District 15.
“As part of our commitment to safety, we’re adding these additional road patrols so we can more rapidly find and assist any drivers who become stranded along our roads during these dangerously hot conditions,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director José Alvarez. “To further protect our customers and employees, we’ve outfitted these patrol vehicles with safety partitions and other equipment that is intended to help deter the spread of COVID-19.”
While the Illinois Tollway’s Highway Emergency Lane Patrol (H.E.L.P.) trucks sponsored by State Farm run from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday, a minimum of 12 Hot Weather Patrols are providing additional coverage around the clock into the weekend to augment H.E.L.P. trucks and Illinois State Police patrols. 
The Hot Weather Patrols consist of crew cab trucks equipped with arrow boards for directing traffic around stranded vehicles and accommodate passengers if motorists need to get out of the heat or be transported to a Tollway maintenance garage or Tollway oasis while service is obtained.
To protect motorists and Tollway workers, plastic partitions have been installed between the front and rear seats in these trucks to help block the spread of COVID-19. The trucks also are stocked with masks, hand sanitizers and gloves for stranded motorists who choose to wait inside the Tollway vehicles for a tow truck or need to be moved to a safer location.
The Hot Weather Patrols typically assist drivers whose cars or trucks have been disabled by empty fuel tanks, flat tires, batteries needing a boost, or overheated radiators.
Summer Travel Tips
The Tollway offers the following travel tips to keep safe during summer weather:
The Illinois Tollway also reminds customers that oases located along the Tollway system serve as cooling centers and also provide drivers an opportunity to check their vehicles or simply take a break. The oases provide a variety of food, beverage and retail offerings, as well as 7-Eleven stores and fuel stations. On the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80), there are three oases: Lake Forest, Hinsdale and Chicago Southland Lincoln in South Holland. There is an oasis on the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88) in DeKalb and on the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) in Belvidere, as well as 7-Eleven stores and fuel stations at the O’Hare Oasis, also on I-294.
7/7/2020 1:34 PM (Updated 7/7/2020 2:55 PM)
New Website For IL-83/IL-137 Improvements

Interactive site seeks public participation on proposed Lake County project  

The Illinois Department of Transportation is inviting the public to learn more and comment about proposed improvements to IL-83/IL-137 between IL-132 and just east of US-45, in Lake County. Instead of hosting a regular public meeting, IDOT will share details on the project and encourage public participation until July 16 through a new interactive website, Click Here.
Based on earlier public meetings, IDOT has identified a recommended preferred alternative to widen about 11 miles of IL-83/IL-137, in Lake Villa, Round Lake Beach, Grayslake and Libertyville, while adding shoulders, turning access to businesses and residences, and bicycle and pedestrian accommodations. Funding for construction has not been identified at this time.
At the new interactive website, the public can watch a video about the project, explore an interactive map, and leave comments. In addition to the website, IDOT’s outreach efforts will include a newsletter mailed to impacted residents and the opportunity to ask questions to IDOT staff over the phone by calling (847) 636-2343.
All comments received by July 16, 2020 will become part of the official public record.
Written comments not submitted via the website should be sent to:
Illinois Department of Transportation
201 West Center Court
Schaumburg, Il. 60196-1096
Attn: Corey Smith in Bureau of Programming
People without internet access can contact IDOT District 1’s Project and Environmental Studies Section Chief, Steve Schilke at (847) 636-2343 for more information about the project.
6/25/2020 1:19 PM (Updated 6/28/2020 10:17 AM)
Annual Click It or Ticket campaign starts Monday

Law enforcement agencies ask for voluntary compliance/public cooperation with traffic laws to help prevent crashes, avoid injuries and save lives

Law enforcement agencies and transportation safety officials are delivering a simple, but potentially life-saving message to all motorists: buckle up – every seat – every trip. During the annual Click It or Ticket seat belt campaign that begins Monday (June 22) and runs through Sunday, July 5, law enforcement agencies across the state will patrol in greater numbers for longer hours to help ensure motorists are traveling safely.
“The primary goal of this national public education and enforcement initiative is motorist safety,” Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) Secretary-designee Craig Thompson said. “To move towards our goal of Zero Deaths on Wisconsin roads, we need all motorists to be safe and responsible. That means buckle up, watch your speed and set the phone aside.”
Wisconsin’s current seat belt use rate is 90.2 percent – the highest ever. Still, of all the car and light truck occupants killed in Wisconsin traffic crashes last year, 44% were not wearing a seat belt.
Wisconsin’s primary seat belt law, in place since 2009, allows law enforcement to stop and cite motorists for failing to wear a seat belt. Drivers can also be cited for every unbuckled passenger in their vehicle. Failure to fasten a seat belt is among the most common traffic violations in Wisconsin and resulted in 41,654 traffic convictions last year.
During Click It or Ticket, WisDOT will use designated federal funds to support enhanced law enforcement efforts, TV, radio and other public education messages. Electronic message signs along major highways will also display buckle up reminders.
“Keeping people and commerce moving safely will always be our top priority,” said State Patrol Superintendent Anthony Burrell. “During Click It or Ticket and throughout the year, we’re asking motorists to voluntarily comply with seat belt and other traffic laws that help keep everyone along our roadways safe.” 
View this document online in the WisDOT Newsroom. 
6/18/2020 12:16 PM (Updated 6/21/2020 10:49 AM)
WisDOT Expands Low-Risk Pilot Program

Program now includes eligible road improvements, federal funding

After launching a pilot program to improve efficiency and streamline bridge improvements for local communities, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) today announced that the program this year will roughly double, expand to other roadway projects, and gain eligibility for federal funding.

In July 2019, the department launched the Local Program Low Risk Pilot project for 16 projects through 2022. Eight are scheduled for construction this year. The new program is adding 30 more projects that include bridges and roadways, statewide through 2025. The newly added projects are located in 20 counties in all five WisDOT regions. To qualify, these projects will create minimal to no impacts to right of way, utilities, railroads or the environment.

“Communities across the state are taking advantage of this innovative, cost-effective program that makes many local improvements faster and easier,” WisDOT Secretary-designee Craig Thompson said. “I am pleased to announce today that this pilot is expanding in all parts of Wisconsin to make our local bridges and roadways safer and more useful.”

WisDOT launched the pilot with input and support from the Federal Highway Administration and Wisconsin County Highway Association. Both groups helped to develop project selection and evaluation criteria and continue to provide quality assurance.

“This program is a proven opportunity for local governments to reduce costs and expedite project delivery,” Wisconsin County Highway Association (WCHA) Executive Director Daniel J. Fedderly, P.E., P.L.S., said. “I want to thank WisDOT for their cooperative efforts, which will benefit local governments for years to come.”

The pilot program reconfigures some pre-construction planning and design reporting requirements for local sponsors to save time getting a project from planning and design to construction. The pilot applies to projects that already had approval in the Local Bridge Improvement Program, the Local Surface Transportation/Rural Program, and the Local Surface Transportation/Urban Program. When the pilot launched last year, the projects were state- and local-funded. The expansion of the pilot includes opportunity for federal funding.

6/15/2020 4:06 PM (Updated 6/15/2020 4:07 PM)
Keep Us Alive Drive 45

Keep Us Alive Drive 45 is our commitment to keep workers and motorists safe in work zones. Each year, many people are killed in construction zone accidents, both commuters and workers. Please abide the posted speed limit in work zones. When workers are present, it's 45 M.P.H. - It's The Law.

Join us in our pledge to increase awareness and promote safe driving in our work zones by displaying an orange ribbon. Together we can make our roadways a safer place to commute and work. With your help, we can see to it that a construction zone is not an end zone.

8/21/2006 12:00 AM (Updated 1/21/2015 10:29 AM)

Admin Log In | Admin Password Request

Please send comments, suggestions, or requests for help to Travel Midwest webmaster.
Much of this site's functionality makes use of cookies and JavaScript.

Tue Jul 14 2020 18:49:15 CDT