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Traffic shifts as work continues on Route 47/tollway project

The first steps widening Route 47 through downtown Yorkville began fall 2012. The city county want Prairie Parkway funds used

The first steps of the widening of Route 47 through downtown Yorkville began in fall 2012. The city and county want Prairie Parkway funds used to continue the Route 47 widening project up to Sugar Grove. | Brian Powers~Sun-Times Media

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Updated: January 29, 2013 6:29AM

HUNTLEY — Traffic on Route 47 was shifted onto new pavement and a new bridge over the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) Thursday as part of the ongoing $61 million interchange project there, the tollway announced.

“Completion of what will become the new southbound lanes and bridge on Illinois Route 47 is a great sign of progress for this important interchange project,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director Kristi Lafleur in a release. “Not only will this project improve access for tollway customers traveling to and from Huntley, it will also offer opportunities for new jobs and economic development in the area.”

With completion of the traffic shift from Del Webb Boulevard to Big Timber Road, work will begin this winter to demolish the old bridge and roadway pavement and start construction of a new bridge that will carry northbound Route 47 traffic when the new interchange opens in 2013.

In addition to building the new bridge structures, the project also includes the reconstruction and widening of 1.5 miles of Route 47 from Big Timber Road to north of Jim Dhamer Drive and Freeman Road.

The release said a work zone will be put in place on Route 47 and local traffic will continue to have one lane open in both directions on the new bridge during construction. Existing ramps that provide access only for drivers traveling to and from the east on I-90 will remain open throughout the project.

The interchange project includes construction of six new ramps with all-electronic toll plazas, reconstruction of the bridge carrying Route 47 over I-90, as well as local traffic signal installation and lighting improvements to provide full access between I-90 and Route 47.

The project is being built in partnership with the village of Huntley, Kane and McHenry counties and the Illinois Department of Transportation as part of the tollway’s 15-year, $12 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future.

The release noted that the interchange project features several new green construction initiatives, including a geothermal water piping system that makes use of the earth’s natural heating and cooling abilities to help heat and cool nearby plaza buildings in a more cost-effective and sustainable manner, reflective roofs and trellised vegetation for plaza buildings to further reduce heating and cooling costs, as well as ramp shoulder pavement that will allow water to seep through and reduce stormwater runoff.

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