GODFREY - October 26, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn, joined by Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann L. Schneider and other state and local officials today clipped a ceremonial ribbon signifying the completion of construction on Illinois Route 255 from Seminary Road to Humbert Road in Godfrey. The $22 million project includes funding from Governor Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! capital program, and created or supported 285 jobs. As part of Governor Quinn’s commitment to modernizing Illinois’ transportation infrastructure, the improvements will also reduce travel time for commuters, improve access and enhance safety.
“This new corridor is especially critical for thousands of commuters who previously had no direct connection from the Godfrey/Alton area to St. Louis,” Governor Quinn said. “This project will save drivers 20 minutes on each trip, improve safety and serve as an economic engine for the area.”
The section to Seminary Road includes a new four-lane asphalt pavement with an interchange at Humbert Road. Additional improvements include a new, four-lane asphalt pavement with an interchange at Illinois Route 111, and are expected to be complete in November. The overall project extends Illinois Route 255 from Seminary Road to U.S. Route 67 in Godfrey. The new section is projected to have an average of 11,000 travelers daily.
“The Illinois Route 255 extension will bolster safety and provide a more convenient route to Godfrey and Alton residents traveling to the St. Louis area,” U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said. “Transportation investments like this that combine federal, state and local funding are one of the best ways to boost economic development in a community.”
“I am a strong proponent of infrastructure investment because it creates good-paying jobs at the same time it creates economic development opportunities,” said Congressman Jerry Costello, a senior member of the U.S. House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee. “In addition, projects like this improve safety and provide physical assets that last for decades and make our economy more efficient, saving time and money by decreasing congestion. The economic benefits of this work will be felt well into the future, and is a great example of cooperation at the federal and state levels.”
The $22 million project was supported by $17.6 million from the Federal Highway Administration and $4.4 million from Governor Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program. Work began in spring 2010 with prime contractor Keller Construction Inc., of Edwardsville. The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) goal for the project was 22 percent and the total DBE goal amount was $4.8 million, both of which were met by the contractor.
“We are happy to open this stretch of roadway to help alleviate the long travel times, reduce the number of vehicle crashes and enhance safety in this heavily traveled region of the state,” said Secretary Schneider. “A special thanks to Governor Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! capital program and the continuous support from our federal partners in making projects like this become a reality to strengthen our transportation network.”
Governor Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program is the largest in Illinois history, supporting an estimated 439,000 construction jobs. The program included $14 billion for transportation through 2015, and $1.5 billion for higher education.
Of the $14 billion in the program dedicated for transportation needs, more than $11 billion has been invested on projects throughout Illinois since 2009. These projects have improved more than 6,900 miles of roads and more than 1,000 bridges, creating or supporting approximately 140,000 jobs.