IDOT invests $910 million in infrastructure projects

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Judy Lamelza

Special to Chicago Construction News

Infrastructure construction in Illinois is on the brink of a renaissance as the state embarks on a historic spree of highway and bridge development projects.

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) recently accepted bids on 236 contracts in what is the largest bid letting in the department’s history. This colossal venture, representing an investment surpassing $910.4 million, is set to redefine the state’s infrastructure while providing ample opportunities for the construction industry.

Pritzker’s Rebuild Illinois initiative is the driving force behind this remarkable development. The program, launched in 2019, is the state’s largest and most comprehensive capital program, allocating $33.2 billion toward rejuvenating Illinois’s aging transportation system. The initiative aims to create jobs, foster economic growth, and enhance the quality of life for residents. Furthermore, the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, passed in late 2021, supplements this effort, with Illinois slated to receive around $17.8 billion in infrastructure funding over five years.

Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman called the bid letting a “historic achievement” that illustrates the transformative investments being made in the state’s infrastructure. Communities throughout Illinois are set to experience the benefits of a modernized transportation system that promotes safety, reliability, and mobility.

For the commercial construction industry, this represents a golden opportunity to participate in state-building projects that will have a lasting impact. The industry’s expertise and innovations will be central to the successful execution of these projects.

Contracts included:

  • $55.4 million for Interstate 80 reconstruction between Minooka and I-55
  • $18.7 million to reconstruct the interchange of Illinois 31 and U.S. 20 in Elgin
  • $20.5 million to reconstruct 1.2 miles of Illinois 7 in Orland Park
  • $14.4 million for bridge repairs over the Cal Sag Channel in Crestwood and Alsip
  • $755,753 for resurfacing Pulaski Road in Chicago
  • $1.4 million for bridge repair in Chicago
  • $4.1 million to convert an intersection into a Restricted Crossing U-Turn in Crete Township
  • $98.8 million for the reconstruction of the I-39 and U.S. 20 interchange in Rockford
  • $28.8 million for resurfacing I-74 in Henry and Knox Counties
  • $7.3 million to replace bridges near Pesotum in Champaign County
  • $68.9 million to build a bridge in Decatur
  • $11.5 million for various improvements on Illinois 121 in Decatur
  •  $44.3 million to construct two bridges in Sangamon County
  • $24.5 million for improvements on U.S. 51 in Forsyth
  • $15.2 million for resurfacing Illinois 255 in the Metro East
  • $36.8 million for resurfacing I-57
  •  $21.6 million for patching and resurfacing I-24 in Vienna

Of these contracts, 38 are in excess of $5 million. These proposals are subject to review, with contracts generally awarded within a month and construction starting shortly afterward. In fiscal year 2023 alone, IDOT has awarded 785 contracts worth more than $2.5 billion for highway and bridge improvements.

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