TILTON – Construction projects move along for the new Tilton Illinois Route 1 intersection, which is scheduled to be open by December, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation.
The state's Route 1 and the village’s side road work look “like a disaster area,” said IDOT supervising field engineer Greg Robinson of the joint projects.
Cross Construction of Urbana is working on the $2.18 million Illinois Route 1 project.
The project entails reconstruction on Route 1 between 14th Street and Southgate Drive to include pavement widening, curb and gutter replacement, resurfacing, raised median, roadway lighting and traffic signals.
Robinson said the project should be completed by Dec. 1, pending weather and any other delays. It had been scheduled to be completed by Oct. 31. Robinson said the IDOT project is about 15 percent complete.
Cross now is working on rebuilding 16th Street. Once 16th Street is finished and tied into Route 1 with the new Ramp Road and intersection, the 14th Street ramps will be torn out.
Barring any foreseen weather, only landscaping may have to be finished up later, Robinson added.
During the project, which will include removing a concrete barrier wall, there will be numerous lane shifts and restricted lane widths, he said.
“Route 1 will remain open at least one direction both ways all the time,” Robinson said.
The separate project has Stark Construction building the side roadway extensions which includes a roundabout on the east side of Route 1 north of Vermilion Chevrolet between First and Ramp roads.
Tilton Mayor Dave Phillips said the roundabout was part of planning with the state to keep up with traffic going to the future developed areas.
Phillips said they didn’t want traffic to back up like it does on North Prospect Avenue in Champaign.
“That’s why we got stuck with it,” Phillips said of the roundabout and keeping traffic moving in a smoother flow.
A Mach 1 gas station and convenience store is the only announced development so far that will be located on the east side of Route 1 in 2019.
“We’re trying to land some more,” Phillips said about other development.
He’s also pleased that Autumn Fields Adult Community assisted living facility also should open on the east side next month.
Phillips said of the Route 1 project, he had heard there was a back order on the new intersection mast arms. Robinson said, however, the mast arms have been ordered and they’re hoping for the best on them and keeping the project progressing.
Phase 1 of the project involved the rebuilding of Southgate Drive, First Avenue, finishing up Lane Street to the new access without removing the ramps and Ramp Road, which is going where the former Hollywood Video building was located.
The state also removed the pedestrian underpass.
Phase 2 of the Route 1 project includes the new intersection with a traffic signal along Route 1/Georgetown Road.
Phillips has said about Ramp Road, which will connect to 1st Avenue and Lane Street on both sides of Route 1, developers are waiting for the road to be built. The Lane Street extension is behind the Dollar General store and 1st Avenue’s extension is between 14th and 16th streets.
Route 1 will have three lanes of traffic at the new intersection, both north and south, with a center turning lane for Ramp Road.
Officials also have said the project will eliminate the confusing and dangerous entrance and exits ramps to 14th Street and create safer entrance and exit to the Interstate 74 ramps.
The entire project had been estimated at around $5 million.