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Open House for MN-47 improvements in St. Francis set for Sept. 19

The public is invited to provide input and learn more about initial concepts for MN-47 in the city of St. Francis at an open house Thursday, Sept. 19.

The event will take place from 4:30-7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church, 22940 St. Francis Blvd NW in St. Francis. Attendees are welcome to come and go at any time, and may view a presentation at 5 or 6 p.m.
 
The open house will be the second the Minnesota Department of Transportation is hosting as part of an ongoing planning study to identify potential improvements on Highway 47 between Cree Street Northwest and Anoka CR-28/Ambassador Boulevard Northwest in St. Francis.
 
The four-lane highway has safety and access issues and is in need of long-term improvements. The study is examining a range of alternatives to address the safety of people walking, biking and driving, as well as the role the highway plays in the future of St. Francis.
 
For more information and to sign up for email updates, visit the project website at mndot.gov/metro/projects/hwy47stfrancis/.
 
If you are unable to attend the open house, an online meeting will be available Sept. 19-30 on the project website.
 
For updated road condition information, call 511 or visit www.511mn.org.
9/16/2019 9:17 AM (Updated 9/16/2019 9:19 AM)
National Memorial Wall on Display at Hinsdale Oasis September 16-23 to Promote Work Zone Safety and Honor Victims

The National Work Zone Memorial will be displayed at the Illinois Tollway’s Hinsdale Oasis September 16-23 to remind drivers to take extra safety precautions in work zones and to honor those who have lost their lives in work zone crashes,

The National Work Zone Memorial travels throughout the U.S. each year and is being displayed by the American Traffic Safety Services Association Foundation.  

The memorial wall lists the names of more than 1,400 people who have died in work zone crashes and now includes Tollway equipment operator/laborer David Schwarz, who was killed on September 18, 2017, while he was working along the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) by a vehicle that failed to move over.

While the memorial wall is at the Hinsdale Oasis on the Tri-State Tollway (I-294), the Illinois Tollway is also encouraging drivers to stop at the display and take the Give Them Distance pledge to follow the Move Over Law, which requires drivers to slow down and move over safely when approaching any vehicle with hazard lights flashing.

Drivers will be able to take the pledge from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily between Monday, September 16, and Friday, September 20. After taking the pledge, drivers also are encouraged to post their pledge on social media to help spread awareness of the law.

The “Move Over” Law, sometimes known as Scott’s Law, requires drivers to slow down and move over safely when approaching any vehicle with hazard lights flashing. First enacted in 2002, the law is named after Lt. Scott Gillen of the Chicago Fire Department who was struck and killed by an intoxicated driver on the Dan Ryan Expressway while assisting at a crash scene.

Several Illinois State Troopers lost their lives this year on the state’s roadways including Troopers Christopher Lambert and Brooke Jones-Story, who were killed when drivers violated the Move Over Law.

Earlier this year, Governor JB Pritzker signed legislation strengthening the penalties for drivers who fail to follow the Move Over Law, including adding a possible prison sentence for drivers who injure or kill another person because they failed to move over.

Gov. Pritzker also increased the penalties for drivers who cut through work zones and for motorists who kill or injure another person in a work zone. The new fines will take effect January 1, 2020.

9/12/2019 3:28 PM (Updated 9/13/2019 11:13 AM)
Open House Will Highlight US-10 Corridor Projects in Anoka, Ramsey

The Minnesota Department of Transportation, along with the city of Anoka and Anoka County, are hosting an open house to highlight several improvement projects planned for US-10 and surrounding highways in Anoka and Ramsey. The open house will take place from 4-7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18 at the Green Haven Golf Course and Banquet Center, 2800 Greenhaven Road in Anoka.

The highlighted projects include:

Attendees will be able to meet project representatives from MnDOT, Anoka County and the city of Anoka and review informational materials. There will be no formal presentation.

The open house also will provide information and gather public comments on the environmental assessment for proposed improvements to approximately 1.5 miles of US-10 between Anoka and Ramsey to just east of the US-10/US-169 interchange at Main Street and Greenhaven Road in Anoka. The EA/EAW outlines the project’s need, purpose and anticipated social, economic and environmental impacts. It also identifies mitigation measures to lessen the impacts of the project.

To request an ASL or foreign language interpreter, call 651-366-4720. To request other reasonable accommodations, call 651-366-4718; the Minnesota Relay Service toll-free at 1-800-627-3529 (TTY, Voice or ASCII) or 711, or email your request to ADArequest.dot@state.mn.us.

For Minnesota statewide travel information, visit www.511mn.org, or call 5-1-1 or log on to www.mndot.gov.

9/5/2019 1:34 PM (Updated 9/9/2019 9:49 AM)
New Traffic Shift Scheduled to Begin on I-57 for Tri-State Tollway (I-294)/I-57 Interchange Project

Work to shift southbound traffic on I-57 at the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) is scheduled to begin this week as part of the I-294/I-57 Interchange Project – Phase 2. Three lanes of traffic will remain open, as will the 147th Street ramps.

 Electronic message signs and construction signage will be put in place in advance to alert drivers. The new traffic pattern is necessary to provide a work zone and safely accommodate traffic during median reconstruction.

 “The Illinois Tollway is committed to ensuring the roadway remains safe for both drivers and workers during construction, which is part of our overall commitment to roadway safety,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director José Alvarez. “We ask drivers to be attentive in work zones by watching for changing traffic patterns and using caution, especially when workers are present.”

During the week of September 3, nightly lane closures will be need on southbound I-57 to prepare for the traffic shift so work can begin for drainage improvements and median construction. All work is weather dependent.

 Beginning at 9 p.m. on Friday, September 6, southbound shoulders are scheduled to close and traffic will be shifted to the right to provide a work zone. Traffic will be shifted for about 1.5 miles north of I-294. Traffic is scheduled to remain in this configuration through the end of the year.

 This work is part of the second phase of the I-294/I-57 Interchange Project, which is building four new ramps to connect southbound I-57 to I-294 and 294 to northbound I-57. As part of this work, the I-57 median will be reconstructed and the I-57 mainline will be widened. This work includes earth excavation, drainage improvements, erosion and sediment control, retaining wall and bridge construction.

 Maps and construction information about the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) I-57 Interchange Project is available on the Tollway’s website at illinoistollway.com via the Interactive Tollway Map and in the Projects section.

 The  I-294/I-57 Interchange Project is funded by the Illinois Department of Transportation and the Illinois Tollway’s 15-year program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future.

 The new interchange is improving travel by providing customers with completed access between the two interstates. For the first time, the new I-294/I-57 Interchange provides motorists with access between I-294 and I-57, including a new interchange at 147th Street. The complete interchange will reduce congestion on local routes, enhance economic development and improve regional mobility. The all-electronic interstate-to-interstate connection better serves commuters and freight operators while opening access for local communities.

9/3/2019 2:24 PM (Updated 9/9/2019 9:45 AM)
New Website Launched For Jane Byrne Interchange

The Illinois Department of Transportation has announced the debut of www.JaneByrneInterchange.org, a new-and-improved website for the Jane Byrne Interchange reconstruction. 

The website underwent a top-to-bottom overhaul to improve navigation and enhance the visitor experience. Project information and updates are presented in a more intuitive, user-friendly manner. The site is also mobile-responsive, making project information easily accessible from a desktop, tablet or smartphone.

 Additionally, all the original documentation from the planning phase of the project is archived in a new Document Library section.

 Among the other highlights:

The Jane Byrne Interchange reconstruction will improve safety and traffic flow for the more than 400,000 motorists who use it daily, while enhancing mobility for bicycles, pedestrians and transit. Construction will be completed by 2022.    

8/22/2019 2:43 PM (Updated 8/31/2019 9:05 AM)
Illinois Tollway And Illinois State Police Launch Operation Kid 2019

First event May 11 at The Promenade Bolingbrook for free child safety seats checks and kids’ ID cards

The Illinois Tollway and Illinois State Police District 15 are teaming up to host their annual Kids Identification and Safety Seat (K.I.S.S.) events as part of Operation Kid 2019.

The Tollway and District 15 have worked together in partnership to promote child safety for more than 15 years, each year holding events throughout Northern Illinois to provide free kids’ ID cards and inspect and install child safety seats. In 2018, Operation Kid helped families and caregivers with nearly 540 child safety seats checks and issued nearly 1,000 kids’ ID cards to parents.

“Our mission is to keep children safe and parents worry-free, every trip, every time,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director José Alvarez. “The safety of motorists and their families is a top priority for the Tollway and Operation Kid gives us the opportunity to help parents keep their children safe on the road and in their communities.”

Illinois law requires that all children under age 8 must be properly secured in an appropriate child restraint system when riding in a vehicle with family or other caregivers. In addition, as of January 1, 2019, children under age 2 years are required by Illinois law to ride rear-facing, unless the child weighs 40 or more pounds or is 40 or more inches tall, to protect their developing muscles and bones.

Properly installed child safety seats save lives and significantly reduce injuries in the event of a crash. Yet, Illinois State Police find that more than 90 percent of child safety seats they inspect are improperly installed.

“Operation Kid offers a convenient way for drivers to make sure they’re complying with Illinois law,” said District 15 Acting Commander Dominic Chiappini. “The safest place for infants, toddlers and young children to ride is in the back seat with the appropriate child safety seat for their age and weight.”

2019 K.I.S.S. Events

To make it easy and fun for parents, grandparents and children alike, 10 K.I.S.S. events will be held at convenient locations at various locations along the 294-mile Illinois Tollway system.

Operation Kid 2019 events kick off on Saturday, May 11, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Promenade Bolingbrook, 631 E. Boughton Road along the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355). Highlights include:

Unless otherwise indicated, all other events are on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

May 18 Hinsdale Oasis
June 1 Kohl Children’s Museum in Glenview
June 8 Lake Forest Oasis
July 27 Bartlett Police Department (Thursday, 8 a.m. to noon)
August 3 Itasca Fire Protection District
August 10 Children’s Museum of Oak Lawn
August 24 DuPage Children’s Museum in Naperville
September 21 Family Safety Fair at Tollway headquarters in Downers Grove
September 28 IKEA Schaumburg

For more information about Operation Kid 2019 and to see additional activities at each event, visit the Tollway’s website.

Child Safety Seat Basics

The safest place for infants, toddlers and young children to ride is in the back seat with the appropriate child safety seat for their age and weight.

Rear-facing child safety seats protect a growing baby’s head, neck and back in an accident. Toddlers and young children should ride in a child safety seat with an internal harness until age 8 or they reach the maximum harness limit of the child restraint.

A booster seat is the most effective way to position a safety belt properly on a young child's growing body. Safety belts are designed for adults who are at least 4 feet 9 inches tall. Until age 8, most children have not developed strong hip bones and their legs and bodies are too short for the adult safety belt to fit correctly without use of a booster seat.

Illinois law requires that whenever a person is transporting a child under age 8, the person is responsible for properly securing the child in an appropriate child restraint system.

Missing Child Basics

Information provided on kids ID cards can help law enforcement search and recover a missing child. That includes a description of the child’s hair and eye color, height, weight, race, unique identifiers such as glasses or beauty marks, as well as date of birth, current photo and fingerprints.

The FBI suggests that parents keep their children’s fingerprints, not only because fingerprints are unique but also because they don’t change over time like a child’s appearance. The FBI also recommends that parents update the photos of their children on ID cards at least once a year to ensure they are current.

With increased public awareness, training, laws and better technology, the recovery rate of missing children has jumped from 62 percent in 1990 to more than 97 percent today, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. 

5/6/2019 3:29 PM (Updated 6/12/2019 11:59 AM)
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)

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Tue Sep 17 2019 18:17:30 CDT