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New year construction season in Buffalo Grove kicks off with Lake Cook Road widening

Originally reported on the Chicago Tribune, January 24, 2020

The long-awaited $58.5 million Lake Cook Road widening project was set to begin construction Monday in an effort to improve traffic and congestion along this major east-west corridor, Cook County officials said ahead of the start.

According to Cook County spokeswoman Natalia Derevyanny, studies for this project began nearly a decade ago. Land acquisition has been taking place for the last two years for this road work, which will impact the villages of Wheeling and Buffalo Grove.

“The Lake Cook Road project fulfills one of Buffalo Grove’s primary long term transportation goals, to provide safe and efficient transportation capacity to our residents and economic viability for our business and industrial users,” Buffalo Grove Village Manager Dane Bragg wrote in an email to Pioneer Press. “Coupled with the Weiland Road, Buffalo Grove Road, Aptakisic Road and Arlington Heights Road projects, the village will have a well-developed, high functioning and safe transportation system.”

The scope of the project, as outlined by Derevyanny, includes widening of Lake Cook Road from Raupp Boulevard to Hastings Lane; widening of Buffalo Grove Road from St. Mary’s Parkway to Church Road; widening of Illinois Route 83/McHenry Road from Weiland Road to the Buffalo Grove Town Center; widening of Woodstone Drive to Illinois Route 83/McHenry Road. In addition, she said, there will be construction of the Weiland Road extension from Illinois Route 83/McHenry Road to Buffalo Grove Road.

“Lake Cook Road will be widened, adding a lane in each direction with dedicated turn lanes at each intersection,” Derevyanny noted.

She said other improvements along the corridor include new storm sewer, watermain, sanitary sewer, traffic signal installations, street lighting, construction of a detention pond, a new bridge over Buffalo Creek, widening/modification of the Buffalo Grove Road bridge over Buffalo Creek, landscaping, sidewalk, bike path and signage.

Derevyanny said the county has secured $22 million in federal grants and approximately $6 million in funding from Lake County, Buffalo Grove and Wheeling to contribute to the total $58.5 million project.

The initial work will include daily lane closures, temporary street lighting, temporary traffic signals, watermain and pond excavation, she said. Construction in April, May and June will include storm sewer replacements, creation of the Weiland Road bridge and electrical work.

Public hearings for the project have already been held.

According to the project plan authored by the Illinois Department of Transportation: “The purpose of the proposed action is to improve mobility in the Weiland Road Corridor from Buffalo Grove Road to Illinois Route 22 and along Lake Cook Road between Buffalo Grove Road and Hastings Lane. Specifically, this project should increase highway user safety, improve capacity and operation, and enhance system linkage along the Weiland Road corridor and Lake Cook Road.”

According to crash data from this same IDOT report, a traffic study was conducted over five years from Jan. 1, 2006 to Dec. 31, 2010 and “a total of 1,473 crashes occurred within the study area during the analysis period, with 205, or 14%, of these collisions resulting in one or more injuries. Two crashes resulted in fatalities during the analysis period.

An electronic village newsletter posted on the Buffalo Grove website earlier this month stated that public meetings, partnership with the county, would be held over the next few months. Also, “updates will be provided throughout the project to all residents and stakeholders,” the newsletter stated.

To view the original article as published on January 24, 2020 - visit the Chicago Tribune website here.

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