The final phase of Illinois' Mission I-55, the Stevenson Expressway reconstruction in Chicago, begins at 9 p.m. Friday.
That's when crews will close one lane inbound from west of LaGrange Road to east of the Des Plaines River Bridge, and one lane from just west of Kedzie Avenue east to Canal Street. By Monday morning's rush hour, drivers will be limited to two lanes in each direction, with all outbound traffic crossed over onto the new inbound lanes.
"This stage of the project essentially is a mirror image of last year's work," said Bruce Dinkheller with the Illinois Department of Transportation. "This year's work calls for the complete reconstruction of the outbound bridges and pavement from Canal Street to Kedzie Avenue and from the Des Plaines River to LaGrange Road."
In addition, patching and resurfacing is scheduled to begin on Monday, April 3. This work, planned for the remaining roadway from Kedzie Avenue to east of the Des Plaines River, will limit traffic to two lanes in each direction and make for one continuous 15-mile work zone.
The DOT expects about 150,000-175,000 vehicles per day to be affected, including many trucks, which make up a large percentage of the expressway's total traffic volume.
With many more exit and entrance ramps being affected by the construction, motorists and truckers will be forced onto alternate routes. Before using any of the alternates, trucks should review clearances for bridges and viaducts, IDOT warns.
For the latest information about Mission I-55, call 312-DOT-INFO or visit www.missionI55.com.