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Gov. Pritzker Announces Start of Illinois 50 Improvements in Bradley-Bourbonnais

Press Release - Friday, May 05, 2023

The $13.8 million project will reduce congestion and enhance safety near the busy Armour Road intersection

BRADLEY - Gov. JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) were joined today by local officials and community leaders to announce the start of improvements to the intersection of Illinois 50 and Armour Road, a project that will reduce congestion and enhance safety while promoting economic development and job growth. Made possible by Gov. Pritzker's historic, bipartisan Rebuild Illinois capital program, the $13.8 million project is the final step to improving traffic flow in a busy area surrounded by retail, lodging, and CSL Behring, Kankakee County's largest employer.

"Revitalizing communities, redesigning transit systems — these are the kinds of changes that I'm proud to support — here and all across the state. And it's the kind of change that sits at the heart and soul of what Rebuild Illinois is all about," said Governor JB Pritzker. "This project has a ripple effect that spreads throughout the county, meeting community needs on many levels. It makes Bradley-Bourbonnais a more welcoming place for Kankakee's largest manufacturing employer, while also creating new construction jobs and investing money back into local business."

The project consists of widening and resurfacing the intersection of Illinois 50 and Armour Road with additional dedicated turn lanes. Improvements also include new storm sewers, an updated biking and walking path, sidewalks, new curbs and gutters, improved lighting, modernized traffic signals, and landscaping. The project will improve access from Armour Road to Pharmaceutical Drive/Arthur Burch Drive, an access point for the CSL Behring factory on the intersection's southwest corner.

The project will eliminate the need for a four-way stop at one of the entrances to CSL Behring's Bradley facility, which employs more than 1,600 people and recently underwent a $1 billion expansion. The work also removes a bottleneck for the approximately 16,900 motorists who use Armour Road and the 24,000 drivers on Illinois 50 each day.

"These intersection improvements once again show how Rebuild Illinois is addressing transportation needs at the local level and helping communities grow and succeed," said Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman. "The new, improved Illinois 50 and Armour Road is an investment in safety and quality of life. It also is part of an ongoing commitment by IDOT under Gov. Pritzker to rebuild our infrastructure as a means to attract and retain jobs."

Gov. Pritzker visited the CSL Behring plant in 2019 five months after being elected, pledging his support to help expedite plans to build a new plant main entrance on Illinois 50 and advance improvements to the intersection with Armour Road that are starting this spring. With the plant's main entrance open and intersection work progressing, chronic backups in the area have diminished, improving traffic flow and safety surrounding a major state employer and tech jobs creator.

The Illinois 50-Armour Road project is just one of many road and bridge improvements in the region made possible by Rebuild Illinois. Ongoing projects include the $5.9 million replacement of the Armour Road bridge over the Canadian National Railroad in Bourbonnais, the $11.3 million replacement of the Maple Street/Waldron Road bridge over Interstate 57, and the $23.5 million replacement of the I-57 bridges over Grinnell Road and the Norfolk Southern Railroad. Upcoming work includes several rebuilt I-57 interchanges: a $95 million investment at Illinois 17, a $40 million project at U.S. 45/52 and $25 million for improvements at County Highway 9 in Manteno.

"This is a terrific day to launch such an important infrastructure project for the 79th District and Kankakee River Valley region," said Assistant Republican Leader and State Rep. Jackie Haas. "By making this critical intersection easier and safer to navigate, we will help connect constituents and visitors alike to economic engines of our communities in Kankakee County. I urge all traveling in the area during this construction period to be mindful of road workers and their safety, as well as the safety of other drivers."

"This project shows major collaboration from government officials, business leaders and community members who all recognize the importance of investing in our infrastructure," said State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex). "By adjoining this project on Route 50 to another just to the south with Bradley's Main Street initiative, we are opening up new opportunities for growth and development. I want to thank Governor Pritzker for supporting this investment in the region and for allocating additional funds when bids came in higher than anticipated due to post-pandemic price increases."

Passed in 2019, Rebuild Illinois is investing $33.2 billion into the state's aging transportation system, creating jobs and promoting economic growth. Rebuild Illinois is not only the state's largest capital program ever, but also the first one that touches all modes of transportation: roads and bridges, transit, waterways, freight and passenger rail, aviation, and bicycle and pedestrian accommodations. As of March 31, Rebuild Illinois has made $10.9 billion of improvements statewide on 4,913 miles of highway, 479 bridges, and 709 additional safety improvements.

For local governments in Kankakee County, Rebuild Illinois has meant an added $11 million in motor fuel tax revenues to advance their projects. Also, $22.7 million as part of $1.5 billion earmarked for municipal, township and county projects statewide in Rebuild Illinois has been awarded in the county for road and bridge improvements, traffic signal upgrades, new storm sewers, sidewalk replacements and other long-term maintenance needs.