February , 2019

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Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

IDOT Reopening Lanes Where Possible for Labor Day

Posted by Admin On August - 31 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL — The Illinois Department of Transportation announced the reopening of lanes where possible for the Labor Day holiday to minimize travel disruption.

Non-emergency work will be suspended from 3 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31, through 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 4, when construction will resume.

The following work zones will remain in place during the holiday weekend. Pay close attention to signs and posted speed limits. Please buckle up, put your phone down and drive sober.

District 1
Cook County

• Illinois 59 (Sutton Road) from north of West Bartlett Road to south of Illinois 19 (Irving Park Road); lane reductions continue.
• Sheridan Road between Lincoln Street and Ridge Avenue in Evanston; lane reductions continue.
• Shermer Road over the West Fork, North Branch of the Chicago River in Northbrook; closed. Detour posted.
• JFK Boulevard from Arlington Heights Road to Elk Grove Boulevard in Elk Grove Village; lane reductions continue.
• Elk Grove Boulevard from Arlington Heights Road to Victoria Lane in Elk Grove Village; lane reductions continue.
• Northwest Highway between Touhy and Washington avenues in Park Ridge; lane reductions continue.
• North Avenue and U.S. 20 (Lake Street) in Streamwood; lane reductions continue.
• East Avenue in Streamwood; lane reductions continue.
• Illinois 50 (Cicero Avenue) between 157th and 161st streets in Oak Forest; lane reductions continue.
• U.S. 6 (159th Street) between Le Claire Avenue and Oak Forest Hospital entrance in Oak Forest; lane reductions continue.
• Interstate 290/Illinois 53 southbound from Interstate 90 to Higgins Road; lane reductions continue. (two lanes open on I-290/IL 53 SB Express & Local)
• Interstate 90 under Interstate 290/Illinois 53; shoulder closed.
• Cicero Avenue over Interstate 57; lane reductions continue.
•  U.S. 12/45 in Stone Park; lane reductions continue.
• Illinois 171 (Archer Avenue) and Illinois 83 intersection in Lemont; lane reductions continue.
• Jane Byrne Interchange project; the following ramps will remain closed:

o Inbound Kennedy (EB I/94) entrance from Madison
o Inbound Kennedy (EB I-90/94) exit to Monroe
o Inbound Kennedy (EB I-90/94) exit to Adams
o Inbound Kennedy (EB I-90/94) exit to inbound Congress Parkway
o Outbound Dan Ryan (EB I-90/94) exit to Taylor and Roosevelt
o Inbound Dan Ryan (WB I-90/94) exit to inbound Congress Parkway
o Inbound Dan Ryan (WB I-90/94) exit to Madison
o Outbound Kennedy (WB I-90/94) entrance from Jackson
o Inbound Eisenhower (EB I-290) exit to Racine
o Outbound Congress entrance from Canal
o Outbound Congress exit to outbound Dan Ryan (EB I-90/94)
o Outbound Eisenhower (WB I-290) exit to Morgan
o Inbound Eisenhower Expressway; lane reductions continue.
o Inbound Congress Parkway; lane reductions continue.
o Monroe Street and Van Buren Street bridges over I-90/94; closed.
DuPage County

• Park Boulevard from Illinois 38 to Revere Road in Glen Ellyn; lane reductions continue. Detour posted.
• Taylor Avenue at the Union Pacific Railroad in Glen Ellyn; closed. Detour posted.
Kane County

• Illinois 64 over the Fox River in St. Charles; lane reductions continue.
• West County Line Road in Maple Park; closed. Detour posted.

Lake County

• U.S. 12 over Illinois 59 ramp in Wauconda; lane reductions continue.
• Southbound Illinois 59 at U.S. 12 in Wauconda; closed. Detour posted.
• Illinois 132 (Grand Avenue) in Gurnee; lane reductions continue.

o Northbound entrance ramp to U.S. 41 and Grandville Avenue; closed.
o Southbound exit ramp from U.S. 41 to Illinois 132; closed. Detour posted.

• Forest Avenue over the Ravine Ditch in Highland Park; closed. Detour posted.
• Illinois 120 over the Canadian Pacific Railway, Greenleaf Street and ramps in Waukegan; lane reductions continue.

o Westbound Illinois 120 exit ramp to Greenleaf Street; closed. Detour posted.

• Illinois 137 (Greenwood Avenue) over the Amstutz Expressway in Waukegan; lane reductions continue.

o Northbound Illinois 137 (Amstutz Expressway) ramp to westbound Greenwood Avenue in Waukegan; lane reductions continue.

• Illinois 120 over US 41, Union Pacific Railroad and Old Skokie Road in Park City; lane reductions continue.
• Illinois 137 over U.S. 45 in Libertyville; lane reductions continue.

McHenry County

• Bay Road over Lily Lake Drain in Johnsburg; lane reductions continue, controlled by traffic signals.
• Deerpass Road at Kishwaukee River in Marengo; closed to through traffic, detour posted.
• Oak Grove Road just west of U.S. 14 in Chemung Township; closed to through traffic, detour posted.
• Main Street over Crystal Creek in Algonquin; closed. Detour posted.

Will County

• Illinois 53 over Hickory Creek in Joliet; lane reductions continue.
• Southbound Illinois 171 (State Street) from Eighth Street to 10th St in Lockport; lane reductions continue.
• Jefferson Street (eastbound U.S. 30) over the Des Plaines River in Joliet; closed. Detour posted.
District 2

Boone County

• U.S. 20 over Appleton Road in Belvidere; lane reductions continue. Ramps open.

Henry County

• Interstate 74/280 over Mosquito Creek near Coal Valley; lane reductions continue.
• U.S. 150 from Illinois 81 to Illinois 17; closed. Detour posted.

Ogle County

• Illinois 2 from Grand Detour to Oregon, 3 bridge deck repairs and HMA resurfacing; northbound lane closed. Detour posted.

Rock Island County

• Interstate 280 over the Mississippi River; lane reductions continue.

Whiteside County

• Interstate 88 from Illinois 78 west 9 miles; lane reductions continue.

District 3

Bureau County

• Illinois 26 north of Princeton; lane reductions continue, controlled by signals.
• Illinois 89 south of Arlington; lane reductions continue, controlled by signals.
• Westbound Interstate 80 west of Interstate 180; lane reductions continue.

Kendall County

• U.S. 52 near Lisbon; lane reductions continue, controlled by signals.

Livingston County

• Interstate 55 between mileposts 199 and 205; lane reductions continue.
• Illinois 116 west of Illinois 23; lane reductions continue.

Kankakee County

• Illinois 50 north of Bourbonnais; lane reductions continue.
• North Street over Interstate 57 in Bradley; closed.

District 4
Henry County

• Illinois 78 south of Kewanee; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals in Henry County.

Knox County

• U.S. 150 (Grand Avenue) over BNSF Railroad in Galesburg; closed, detour posted.
• Interstate 74 just east of Woodhull, over Pope Creek; lane reductions continue.
• Interstate 74 in Galesburg just south of U.S. 34 over BNSF Railroad and Lincoln Street; lane reductions continue.

Knox and Warren counties

• U.S. 34 from Monmouth to Galesburg; closed, detour posted.

McDonough County

• Illinois 9 between U.S. 67 and Illinois 41; closed, detour posted.

Peoria County

• Illinois 40 (Knoxville Avenue) in Peoria from Pennsylvania to Corrington avenues; lane reductions continue.
• Interstate 474 between Airport Road and the Illinois River; lane reductions continue.

Stark County

• Illinois 17 in Toulon; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

Tazewell County

• U.S. 24 at Spring Creek Road in Washington; lane reductions continue.

Woodford County

• Interstate 74 near Carlock to U.S. 150 in McLean County; lane reductions continue.

District 5

Champaign County

• Interstate 74 in both directions between mileposts 185 and 192; lane reductions continue.

DeWitt County

• Illinois 54 over Salt Creek 2 miles west of Kenney; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

Piatt County

• Illinois 48 over Friends Creek Ditch 3 miles south of Deland; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

McLean County

• Southbound U.S. Business 51 (South Center Street) in Normal; lane reductions continue. Detour posted.

District 6

Logan County

• Old U.S. 66 over Kickapoo Creek just north of Lawndale; closed, detour is posted.

Morgan County

• Interstate 72 at Morton Avenue; lane reductions continue.

Cass County

• U.S. 67 over the Illinois River; lane reductions continue.

District 7

Macon County

• U.S. 36 over U.S. 51 at the U.S. 36/U.S.51 interchange west of Decatur; closed, detour posted.

Lawrence County

• Illinois 1 north of Lawrenceville; closed, detour posted.

Fayette County

• Interstate 70 westbound just west of the Brownstown interchange; lane reductions continue.
• Interstate 70 in both directions just west of the U.S. 51 interchange in Vandalia; lane reductions continue.

Moultrie County

• Illinois 133 2.5 miles east of Lovington; closed. Detour posted.

Coles County

• Illinois 16 2 miles west of Mattoon; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

District 8
Greene County

• Illinois 108 in Eldred; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals/

Madison County

• Baumann Road at Interstate 70 north of Pierron; closed.
• Illinois 143 just east of Wanda/Moreland Road; closed.
• Interstate 55 between Illinois 143 and Illinois 140; lane reductions continue.
• U.S. 40 at Silver creek just west of Illinois 4; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.
• Illinois 157 at Burdick Creek Road south of Glen Carbon; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

Bond County

• Illinois 143 east of Pierron; closed.
• Interstate 70 near Greenville; lane reductions continue.

St. Clair County

• Illinois 15 just east of Illinois 159 in Belleville; lane reductions continue.
• Martin Luther King Bridge; closed.

Washington County

• Illinois 127 south of Illinois 161; lane reductions continue. Controlled by sginals.

District 9

Jackson County

• Illinois 13 west of Carbondale; lane reductions continue.
• Illinois 13 east of Carbondale; lane reductions continue.

Jefferson County

• Illinois 37 8 miles south of Illinois 148; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

Perry County

• Illinois 154 east of U.S. 51; lane reductions continue, controlled by signals.
• Illinois 13/127 south of Illinois 152; lane reductions continue, controlled by signals.

Saline County

• Illinois 34 through Galatia; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.
• U.S. 45 just north of Harrisburg; lane reductions continue.

Union County

• Interstate 57 at the Anna interchange; lane reductions continue.
• Interstate 57 near the Dongola interchange; lane reductions continue.

White County

• U.S. 45 south of Illinois 14; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

Williamson County

• Illinois 37 south of Marion; lane reductions continue. Controlled by signals.

Gov. Rauner Announces $37 Million Investment to Enhance Transportation in Illinois Communities

Posted by Admin On May - 15 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

Competitive grant program emphasizes bicycle, pedestrian and streetscape improvements aimed at enhancing travel and quality of life


SPRINGFIELD, IL – Gov. Bruce Rauner announced a nearly $37 million investment to expand travel options and enhance the quality of life in communities throughout the state. The 54 projects approved through the Illinois Department of Transportation’s Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program include biking and walking paths, trails, streetscape beautification work and other projects designed to encourage safe travel across the various modes of transportation at the local level.

“Investing in local infrastructure is a sure-fire way to improve safety and quality of life,” said Gov. Rauner. “These awards and projects will go a long way in making our great cities and communities even better places to work, raise a family and do business.”

Made possible by federal funds administered by IDOT, ITEP awards are focused on improving bike and pedestrian travel, as well as other surface transportation improvements that promote alternative options for getting around your community. To be eligible, applicants must commit a local match of at least 20 percent to their project and demonstrate a plan to have their awards spent within four years.

For the latest funding cycle, IDOT received 218 applications for projects worth an estimated $252 million. The next call for projects will be during fall 2019 followed by a spring 2020 award announcement.

“By investing in our local communities, we are strengthening our state’s transportation system as a whole,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “Each of these investments embodies our core mission at IDOT and brings us a step closer to our goal of a multimodal transportation system that benefits all residents of Illinois.”

Click here for more information about the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program.

Death Toll on Suburban Roads Nearly 3 Times More Than in the City in 2015

Posted by Admin On June - 2 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

The culprit is more people driving on roads that are designed for speed rather than safety

CHICAGO, IL — Suburban traffic fatalities in 2015 outnumbered those in Chicago nearly 3 to 1, according to a new report from the Active Transportation Alliance.

“Many people are shocked to learn that our suburban communities have a far greater number of traffic fatalities,” said Ron Burke, executive director of the Active Transportation Alliance. “Why? Suburban communities have more people driving more cars at faster speeds on roads that are often designed to maximize travel speeds at the expense of public safety.”

Burke said the most important strategies to improve traffic safety are more enforcement of traffic laws and streets designed with safety in mind for everyone who uses them.

In 2015, 301 people died while walking, biking and driving on roads in suburban communities, while the city of Chicago saw 119 traffic fatalities. The greatest contrast occurred with motorist fatalities: 228 people died in cars in the suburbs vs 66 in the city during 2015 (2015 is the most recent year that official crash data is available from the Illinois Department of Transportation).

Also in 2015, 59 people were killed while walking in suburban communities while 46 people in Chicago were killed while walking. For people biking, 14 people in the suburbs were killed while 7 people were killed in the city.

One of the most powerful strategies for making streets safer and more welcoming is an international movement called Vision Zero, which aims to reduce and ultimately eliminate serious traffic injuries and fatalities. The city of Chicago is preparing to release a Vision Zero plan in coming weeks. The Active Transportation Alliance urges suburban Chicagoland communities to follow Chicago’s lead and start drawing up Vision Zero plans.

“Our streets are valuable public spaces and using them shouldn’t require putting your life at risk,” said Burke. “The good news is that we know how to make our streets safer for everyone. Vision Zero has saved countless lives in the United States and around the world — we need to do the same here.”

Other points highlighted in the report:

  • Traffic injuries are unchanged or decreasing since 2005 for people in cars, walking and riding bikes.
  • Since 2005, traffic fatalities are mostly unchanged for people in cars and riding bikes, but have increased for people walking.

While many people think expressways pose the greatest danger for crashes in the Chicago region, it’s the arterial roads where crashes are most likely to happen — despite the fact that arterial roads comprise only 14 percent of regional roadways. Arterial roads, which are mostly controlled by IDOT, account for 53 percent of the reported crashes region wide.

About the Active Transportation Alliance
The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that advocates for walking, bicycling, and public transit to create healthy, sustainable and equitable communities. The organization works to build a movement around active transportation, encourage physical activity, increase safety and build a world-class transportation network. The Active Transportation Alliance is supported by more than 7,000 members and 1,000 volunteers. For more information about the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312.427.3325.

IDOT, Law Enforcement Urge Motorists to ‘Click It or Ticket’ as Summer Travel Season Begins

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Illinois to participate in multistate ‘Border to Border’ crackdown


SPRINGFIELD, IL – As Memorial Day approaches, the Illinois Department of Transportation and state and local law enforcement agencies are joining forces to remind motorists to wear their seat belts and avoid impaired driving.

“Wearing your seat belt is the law, but it’s also a matter of common sense,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “Making the right choice to buckle up, every time, no matter where you are seated, substantially increases your chance of survival in the event of a crash. By buckling up and avoiding impaired driving, you can help keep Illinois roads safer for all who are traveling.”

Motorists can expect to see increased patrols and enforcement zones throughout Illinois as part of IDOT’s “Click It or Ticket” campaign. To help kick off the campaign, law enforcement agencies throughout Illinois will join neighboring states Monday, May 22, from 4 to 8 p.m., in mobilizing the national “Border to Border” Operation, sending a zero-tolerance message to the public that driving or riding unbuckled will result in a ticket, no matter what state.

These unified efforts to crack down on unbuckled and impaired drivers come at a time when traffic fatalities are on the rise. Illinois has seen an increase in motor vehicle fatalities over the last two years. According to 2015 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, 42 percent of nationwide motor vehicle fatalities involved unbuckled vehicle occupants.

Seat belts are designed to keep you positioned safely in a vehicle. Should a crash occur, a seat belt helps slow down the body, works in conjunction with the air bag and spreads force over a wider area of the body, lessening the likelihood of injury or ejection.

“You can safeguard the lives of your passengers and fellow motorists simply by buckling up,” said Illinois State Police Director Leo P. Schmitz. “Whether you’re traveling block-to-block or border-to-border, make sure every occupant in your vehicle is wearing their seat belt.”

For more information on the “Click It or Ticket” mobilization, visit buckleupillinois.org.

Traveling for Memorial Day? Time to Buckle Up

Posted by Admin On May - 26 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

IDOT, law enforcement campaign coincides with increase in traffic fatalities


SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), Illinois State Police (ISP) and hundreds of local law enforcement agencies throughout the state are vowing to crack down on seat belt law violators and impaired drivers this Memorial Day weekend. An increased number of patrols will be out in force 24/7, with a focus on late-night hours when unbuckled and impaired driving fatalities are at their highest.

The stepped-up enforcement comes as traffic fatalities are on the rise in Illinois and throughout the country. Last year, according to provisional data, 998 people lost their lives on Illinois roads, the highest total in seven years. As of May 20, 372 people have died in crashes, a nearly 18 percent increase in one year.


Heavier travel during summer months is often followed by an increase in motor vehicle fatalities. Last year, 13 people died in 12 crashes during the Memorial Day weekend.

“We are very concerned about the upturn of motor-vehicle fatalities in Illinois,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “To start getting those numbers going in the opposite direction, we encourage everyone to take one critical action that can save them in a crash – buckle up. Don’t make this holiday weekend a tragic one.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than half of traffic fatalities involve someone not properly buckled up.


The federally funded Click It or Ticket enforcement period allows police to provide additional patrols that will include more than 50 roadside safety checks, with half of the patrols taking place during the nighttime hours. The Click It or Ticket program’s goal is to change behavior by strongly enforcing seat belt laws. Motorists choosing not to buckle up in every seating position will be ticketed. Impaired drivers will be arrested.

Cook County 2016 Road Construction Lineup Targets Projects Throughout Region

Posted by Admin On May - 23 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

The 2016 construction season is under way and the Cook County Department of Transportation and Highways has announced a number of road and bridge projects throughout the region.
Projects this season include:

*        Lake Cook Road bridge repairs over Buffalo Creek in Buffalo Grove and over Wisconsin Central Railroad in Wheeling. The work will include the removal and replacement of existing strip seal expansion joints, structural repair of concrete and deck slab repair.

*        Pavement preservation and rehabilitation at  Busse Road from Golf Road to Lonnquist Boulevard in Mount Prospect and at the Edens East  Frontage from Lincoln Avenue to Harms Road in Morton Grove and Skokie.

*        Pavement resurfacing and rehabilitation with drainage improvements at Halsted Street and 144th Street in Riverdale.

*        Intersection improvements at 156th Street from Commercial Avenue to Halsted Street in Harvey.

*        Reconstruction with drainage improvements on Center Street between 171st Street and 159th Street in Harvey.

*        Reconstruction with drainage improvements and pavement preservation and rehabilitation on Plainfield Road from Willow Springs Road to East Avenue in Countryside; on 107th Street from 88th Avenue to Kean Avenue in Palos Hills; on 103rd Street from  88th Avenue to Kean Avenue in Palos Hills;  on Kedzie Avenue at Governors Highway in Flossmoor; on Kedzie Avenue from  183rd Street to 175th Street in Homewood and Hazel Crest; on Sauk Trail from Cicero Avenue to Governors Highway in Richton Park; and on Wolf Road at 139th Street in Orland Park.
In addition, the Cook County Department of Transportation and Highways will oversee pavement resurfacing and rehabilitation in Leyden Township on Winters Drive from Wolf Road to Roberta Avenue; on Scott Street from Armitage Avenue to Palmer Avenue; and on Dickens Avenue from Geneva Avenue to Manheim Road.
Work began for some projects in April and all the work will be completed by December.
Residents with questions or concerns can call (312) 603-1601 or email HWY.supt@cookcountyil.gov<mailto:HWY.supt@cookcountyil.gov>.

Active Trans Lauds City Plan to Make it Easier and Safer to Use Lakefront Trail

Posted by Admin On March - 23 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Improving the Lakefront Trail has been one of Active Trans’ top priorities since our founding more than 30 years ago 


CHICAGO, IL — After many years of advocating to create separate lakefront trails for people on bikes and people on foot, Mayor Emanuel has revealed that the Chicago Park District will do just that on two of the most congested portions of the Lakefront Trail.


According to the Chicago Tribune, the trail will be widened and split into separate lanes for bikes and people on foot between Fullerton and Ohio Street on the North Side and between 31st Street and 51st Street on the South Side.


On WBEZ radio, the mayor said these improvements will occur over a three year period. He also said three new miles of a crushed stone running/walking path will be added, although he didn’t specify where this would be during the interview.


Over the past year, Active Trans has been providing advice and recommendations to the park district on how to ease congestion and conflicts on the trail, with a focus on creating separate trails.


The plans announced by the mayor are among the ideas that Active Trans has recommended for near- and medium-term improvements, and we’re excited about new trail construction in the longer term that could accompany reconstruction of North Lake Shore Drive. Bike/Pedestrian separation and other trail issues have risen to the top of the conversation about the long-term reconstruction of North Lake Shore Drive.


“One of the most common concerns we hear about is congestion on the Lakefront Trail, and many people say they avoid the trail all together on summer weekends because it is so crowded,” said Active Trans Executive Director Ron Burke. “With tens of thousands of people moving at very different speeds crammed into a narrow trail, the summer Lakefront Trail experience can be hectic and prone to conflicts and crashes.”


The news came on the heels of the mayor’s exciting announcement Sunday that the city is moving ahead with its next rails to trails project in Pilsen and Little Village.

Creating a continuous, quality Lakefront Trail has been one of Active Trans’ top priorities since our founding more than 30 years ago.


In 2011, we worked with the Chicago Park District on a study of trail usage that featured the most in-depth trail user counts to date. The study found more than 30,000 people accessed the trail daily at the busiest points, and we estimated more than 100,000 used the trail on a typical summer weekend, making it one of the busiest trail in the U.S.


Those counts became the foundation for our 2013 People on the Trail Report with the Chicago Area Runners Association (CARA) and Friends of the Parks. The report analyzed results from a survey of more than 1,500 trail users, bringing attention to the highest conflict segments of the trail and identifying separation as the top priority for users.


More than 1,700 people signed our 2014 petition to the Chicago Park District in support of separation and we worked with Lakefront Trail crash victim Megan Williams to call for separating the trail at park district budget hearings and in local media.


Active Trans cannot fully evaluate the city’s plans as we have yet see them in detail, but we’re optimistic and will continue to work with the city to ensure leaders effectively implement these improvements and continue to upgrade trail infrastructure.


Our People on the Trail report outlines additional strategies to improve the trail experience, including better access to the trail, public education, directional signage, limiting conflicts associated with special events, and trail maintenance.


If you’re a regular user of the Lakefront Trail, Active Trans monitors trail conditions year-round with our @activetransLFT Twitter account and #ChiLFT. The hashtag tracks the many events happening on the trail and generates activity from the growing number of people who use the trail for commuting and other uses.


The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit so safe, convenient and fun that we will achieve a significant shift from environmentally harmful, sedentary travel to clean, active travel. The organization builds a movement around active transportation, encourages physical activity, increases safety and builds a world-class transportation network. Formerly the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation, the Active Transportation Alliance is supported by more than 7,000 members and 1,000 volunteers.


For more information about the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312.427.3325.


IDOT, Amtrak Reach Agreement on Train Service

Posted by Admin On February - 8 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and Amtrak announced that they have reached an agreement to keep in place existing service levels on state-supported routes at a savings to taxpayers and without having to raise fares on the downstate Illinois routes.

“Passenger rail plays a vital role in connecting our state’s great communities and institutions,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “This agreement preserves the service that riders have come to expect while saving taxpayer money and avoiding a fare increase for our downstate routes. We will continue to look out for the public’s best interests in future service agreements with Amtrak.”

The agreement will maintain the Amtrak schedule for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, at a cost of $38.3 million to the state. In the previous fiscal year, IDOT paid $42 million for state-supported Amtrak service in Illinois.

To keep the schedule in place, IDOT negotiated the use of credits to lower its annual payment to Amtrak. The credits cover previous equipment upgrades IDOT paid for on Amtrak’s behalf, as well as earlier state investments to establish onboard Wi-Fi service. The state also negotiated a $2.7 million reduction from Amtrak’s original request for equipment maintenance for the year.

The state currently supports four daily round trips between Chicago and St. Louis on the Lincoln Service, two daily round trips between Chicago and Quincy on the Illinois Zephyr and Carl Sandburg lines, and two daily round trips between Chicago and Carbondale on the Illini and Saluki lines. Illinois and Wisconsin split the cost of operating seven daily round trips on the Hiawatha Line between Chicago and Milwaukee, with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation providing for 75 percent of the route’s cost.

“Our partnership with Illinois is one of the longest and the second-largest, growing to more than 2 million passengers a year,” said Jay Commer, Amtrak SVP/General Manager of the State-Supported Service Business Line. “Amtrak looks forward to working with the State of Illinois to continue to provide this important service to its residents.”

Click here for more information on IDOT and Amtrak or visit www.Amtrak.com.

Illinois Winter Road Conditions in One Click

Posted by Admin On January - 7 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

IDOT online map offers real-time info to help Illinois travelers 

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Transportation reminds motorists to bookmark gettingaroundillinois.com on their computers and smartphones for quick access to the latest winter road conditions. The Getting Around Illinois map is updated 24/7 during winter weather, providing motorists with the latest information on what to expect before heading out on the roads.

“Illinois winters are legendary for their rapidly changing conditions,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “The winter road conditions map gives you a quick, simple-to-understand view of road conditions throughout Illinois. It’s a great tool for knowing what to expect if you are traveling during snow-and-ice season.”

Click here or visit IDOT’s YouTube channel to watch our new video that shows how the data for the map is collected and passed along in simple red, yellow and green colors to give Illinois drivers the information they need this winter.

The Getting Around Illinois website averages one to two million visits during winter. Widely shared on social media, the page’s interactive map is a go-to resource for travelers, forecasters and anyone interested in seeing how the roads are looking during inclement weather. Users of gettingaroundillinois.com also can find other useful information for their travels, including points of interest, gas stations, restaurants, and hotels.

IDOT: Illinois Law Enforcement Working Overtime this New Year’s Eve

Posted by Admin On December - 30 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

 Special patrols scheduled through weekend to reduce fatalities on Illinois roadways


CHICAGO, IL – As 2015 comes to a close, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), Illinois State Police (ISP) and nearly 200 law enforcement agencies throughout the state will be working overtime this New Year’s holiday weekend. The effort has one simple goal – to save lives and reduce fatalities and serious injuries on Illinois roadways.

“Fatality numbers are a way to measure progress, but they are clearly so much more than just numbers. They represent friends, family and loved ones,” said IDOT’s Division of Traffic Safety Director Jared Thornley. “If you are going to drink this holiday, plan another way home before the celebration begins – and always remember to buckle up.”

During these final days of 2015, hundreds of additional law enforcement hours, funded through federal highway safety funds administered by IDOT, will provide additional roadside safety checks, seat belt enforcement zones and other patrols, reminding motorists to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket.”


“With fatalities on the rise, Illinois State Police troopers will be stepping up patrols on New Year’s Eve looking for Fatal Four violations: DUI, Speeding, Distracted Driving and Seatbelt Compliance,” said ISP Colonel Tad Williams. “The ISP will conduct numerous Roadside Safety Checks and roving patrols in fatality areas throughout the state. Designate a driver when making plans this holiday season. Drive Sober, or Get Pulled Over.”

Over the last five New Year’s holiday periods (2010-2014), which include New Year’s Eve, an average of 39 people died on Illinois roads, with 2,845 injured, according to IDOT data. Seventeen, or 44 percent, of those 39 individuals, died in crashes involving at least one driver who had been drinking.

During last year’s New Year’s holiday period, 10 people lost their lives and 856 were injured in motor-vehicle crashes. Five of the 10 fatalities resulted from crashes in which a driver had been drinking.

Illinois has experienced fewer than 1,000 traffic fatalities each of the last six years, the lowest numbers since 728 in 1920 and 887 in 1921. In 1922, fatalities rose above 1,000, where they remained until 2009, when 911 people lost their lives on Illinois roads.  Fatalities reached an all-time high of 2,600 in 1941.

Provisional data show 999 traffic fatalities so far this year in Illinois, an increase of 8.5% from a year ago. For a more complete breakdown of the data, click here.

The public can do their part to make this a safe holiday weekend and achieve zero fatalities by following these simple rules:

  • Plan ahead. Designate a sober driver before going out and give that person your keys.

  • If you’ve been drinking, call a taxi, use mass transit or call a sober friend or family member.

  • Use your community’s designated driver program.

  • Promptly report drunk drivers you see on the roadways to law enforcement.

  • Wear your seat belt and make sure all passengers are safely buckled up. It is your best defense against a drunk driver.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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