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home : local news : local news May 27, 2016

1/15/2014 2:17:00 PM
Progress made, planned on U.S. 50 4-lane project
Those pushing to extend a four-lane U.S. Route 50 across southeastern Illinois were busy in 2013 and expect to be at least as busy during the new year. 

A group from the The U.S. Route 50 Four-Lane Coalition met with Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider in November. Coalition members have also recently met with several members of the Illinois General Assembly. 

Over the past two years, the project has grown with members spanning from Indiana to the St. Louis metro area.  The coalition includes members from Lawrence, Richland, Clay, Marion, Clinton and St. Clair counties, with the common goal of expanding U.S. 50 to four lanes across the state.  

Chuck Hartke, the coalition's consultant, recently highlighted accomplishments and spoke of the need for more resources for the continuation of Phase 1 and 2 studies.  

In July 2011, IDOT signed a Phase 1 Environmental Energy Study Contract. It ranges from 2.5 miles west of Illinois Route 130 in Richland County to 3.5 miles east of Illinois Route 1 in Lawrence County, and is to be completed soon.  

In August, IDOT secured funding to complete a Phase 1 Environmental Energy Study of a bypass project at Lebanon.

  The goal is to complete both Phase 1 and Phase 2 studies so the two projects will be "shovel ready" when additional funding is available.  

Here is an overview of where the U.S. 50 project stands going into the new year:

•Interstate 64 at lllinois 158 in O'Fallon  to lnterstate 57 West of Salem:

- U.S. 50 is two-lane for 60.2 miles from Interstate 64 at Illinois 158 in O'Fallon to Interstate 57 west of Salem; except at interchanges with Illinois 160 north of Trenton, with County Highway 11 (Jamestown Road) north of Breese, and with Interstate 57 west of Salem, where U.S. 50 is a four-lane divided highway.

Current Status:

- Phase I engineering for location, environmental and design studies for the Lebanon Bypass connecting Illinois 4, south of Lebanon to U.S. 50 east of Lebanon is programmed in fiscal year 2014 at a cost of $500,000, with an additional $500,000 during FY 2015-2019 to complete the Phase I studies. This is funded by the Illinois Jobs Now program.

- Phase II engineering for contract plans for the Lebanon Bypass connecting Illinois 4 north of Lebanon to U.S. 50 East of Lebanon is programmed in FY 2015-2019 at a cost of $3 million. This is also funded by the Illinois Jobs Now program.

- The estimated cost to complete all engineering, land acquisition, utility adjustments and construction for a four-lane divided highway ranges from $856 million to $947 million. Depending on the year of construction and inflation these costs are only a rough estimate.

History:

- Phase I engineering for location studies and preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement for the project from Illinois 158/Interstate 64 to Illinois 127 north of Carlyle was approved in 1978. The design report and EIS are no longer valid and would require re-evaluation. 

The proposed section from Illinois 158 at Interstate 64 east of O'Fallon to Illinois 4 in Lebanon in St. Clair County, with its major environmental impacts in the Silver Creek wetlands area, may not be approved. A west-end terminus at Illinois 4 in Lebanon would eliminate these impacts. Also, the alignment proposed for the Carlyle bypass on the north side of Carlyle on the dam for Lake Carlyle is on federal park land.

- All structures for an access-controlled four-lane divided highway from Summerfield Road east of Lebanon to Illinois 127, north of Carlyle have been built on the new alignment. 

- About 95 percent of the right-of-way parcels have been acquired for a four-lane divided highway from Interstate 64 to Illinois 127 north of Carlyle.



• Interstate 57 west of Salem  to the Indiana state line at Vincennes:

- U.S. 50 is two-lane for 68.6 miles from Interstate 57 west of Salem to east of Lawrenceville, except at interchanges with Interstate 57 west of Salem and east of Flora at U.S.  45, where it is a four-lane divided highway. U.S. 50  is a four-lane freeway for 7.4 miles from east of Lawrenceville to the Indiana state line at Vincennes.

Current status:

- A feasibility study for upgrading U.S. 50 to four lanes from Interstate 57 west of Salem to east of Illinois 1, about 74 miles, was completed in 2008 at a cost of $1.7 million.

- Phase I engineering for location, environmental and design studies for the section of U.S. 50 from two miles west of Illinois Route 130 to Lawrenceville was started in March 2011 and is in progress, at a current cost of $3.1 million with an additional $1 .2 million programmed in FY 2014.

- Archaeological surveys were completed at a cost of $150,000.

- Phase II engineering for contract plans for the section of U.S. 50 from two miles west of Illinois 130 to Lawrenceville is programmed during FY 2015-2019 at a cost of $693,000.

History:

- Phase I engineering studies were completed from Salem to the Indiana state line between 1969 and 1973. These studies are no longer valid and new studies are required.

- Right-of-way was acquired between Xenia and the Indiana state line for the expansion of U.S. 50 to a four-lane divided highway.

- The estimated cost to complete all engineering, land acquisition, utility adjustments and construction for a four-lane divided highway ranges from $728 million to $800 million. 

The cost range was developed from estimates in the feasibility study, which used 25 percent contingency and a base year of 2007. Depending on the year of construction and inflation these costs are only a rough estimate.







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