Illinois, CenterPoint reach agreement to build Will County toll bridge

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Monday, July 11, 2016

JOLIET, Ill. (WLS) -- The state of Illinois and CenterPoint have reached an agreement to build a toll bridge connecting the company's Will County intermodal facilities to I-80.

CenterPoint will build and operate the bridge on Houbolt Road over the Des Plaines River and the BNSF Railroad tracks at a cost of $150 to $170 million, according to a press release from Governor Bruce Rauner's office. The bridge will provide two lanes of traffic in each direction.

The Illinois Department of Transportation will contribute $21 million to the project to widen Houbolt Road and reconfigure the existing interchange to handle increased traffic.

"This project will improve the flow of goods and services throughout the region, relieving the congestion and addressing the safety issues that are impacting many surrounding communities," said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn.

11,000 vehicles per day are expected to use the bridge initially, growing to 30,000 a day by 2040.

"The project is long overdue and will only enhance the region's position as a freight hub for North America and an economic engine for the state," said Gov. Rauner.

Will County is required to pass a resolution allowing CenterPoint to collect tolls on the bridge.