Construction wraps up on Lake Shore Drive/Stevenson Expressway Interchange Project

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Drivers got some relief Friday as the years-long project at the Stevenson Expressway and Lake Shore Drive officially wrapped up. (WLS)

Drivers got some relief Friday as the years-long project at the Stevenson Expressway and Lake Shore Drive officially wrapped up.

It's one of the most anticipated roadwork projects, years in the making and the I-55-Lake Shore Drive Interchange Project is now complete.

"It's a vital gateway to Chicago and critical connections to landmarks and attractions along Lake Michigan," said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn.

About 125,000 drivers use the interchange every day and as many as 2.5 million visitors drive on it each year.

"Lake Shore Drive is one of the most important pieces in the city's transportation network," said Chicago Department of Transportation Deputy Commissioner Tom Carney.

Construction on the almost $135 million project started back in 2015, making commuting into the city from the south end, at times, an absolute traffic nightmare, especially for the millions of people visiting the city.

"The timing couldn't be better. We just opened our new Wintrust Arena, we've added another hotel, the Marriott Marquis 1,200 room property on the campus and we continue to be extremely busy here in the convention center so having this infrastructure in place only continues to make us competitive and be able to attract conventions from all over the world to Chicago," said David Causton, general manager of McCormick Place.

The work involved rebuilding six elevated bridges, adding lanes and improving ramps.
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