"April 1st we're going to take the outside lane, shut it down, put everybody in the middle, so there's going to be one less lane for the motoring public through that section," said Jacek Tyszkiewicz, IDOT project engineer.
The project spans 27 miles from the Circle Interchange to Thorndale Avenue, and I-355 from Army Trail Road to I-290. The first phase of the project will be rehabbing 37 bridge structures, replacing joints, and new bridge decks, making this a very active repair zone.
"We're going to have lots of stage changes as we finish up sections, we're going to put the workers on the inside lanes and the traffic on the outside lanes and there will be 3 or 4 stages on some of these more complex bridges," said Tyszkiewicz.
The next phase of the project - the grinding off of the deteriorated pavement and resurfacing the entire expressway, including exit and entrance ramps. No two consecutive ramps will be closed at the same time.
There is a bit of good news: once crews get about half-way through the project, the remaining work will be done at night!
"Once we get the bridges done, on the east end, through the city, we have an interim completion date - we'll be opening up all lanes at the end of June and then doing all the resurfacing at night," said Tyszkiewicz.
Bridge work west of Mannheim is more extensive and won't finish until the end of August when resurfacing will begin at night.
If this isn't enough to make you look for alternate routes, remember the Congress Bridge, Wacker Drive Interchange, and I-355 resurfacing projects also start at about the same time! They'll all be done in 3 short years!