By DOUG WILSON
Herald-Whig Senior Writer
Illinois will spend $2.24 billion on highway projects in the coming year, including $1 million as the first phase of work to replace Quincy Memorial Bridge.
Illinois Secretary of Transportation Ann Schneider announced a $12.62 billion six-year transportation plan Wednesday that includes mass transit, passenger rail and airport projects in addition to highways.
"These projects will make our entire transportation system safer, easier, more efficient and ready to accommodate our current and future needs," Schneider said.
Gov. Pat Quinn said the transportation projects "will drive economic growth in every part of Illinois and create tens of thousands of jobs."
The 2014 highway program will complete one of the largest construction campaigns in the state's history. The program includes $2.24 billion in spending for 2014, but the average spending through 2019 is only $1.588 billion.
Schneider said an expected decline in federal funding will account for the steep drop in funding.
"That (Federal Highway Bill) runs out at the end of 2014. We are anticipating a much lower 15 percent drop-off in federal receipts," Schneider said.
About 71 percent of the program calls for maintenance and preservation of the state's highways and bridges.
IDOT Deputy Director Roger Driskell said the initial $1 million to prepare for replacement of the Quincy Memorial Bridge will involve environmental work and design studies. Another $2.5 million is in the highway program through 2019.
"We'll hire a consultant and then we'll have a two- or three-year study," Driskell said.
The bridge is more than 80 years old and has been on a priority list for replacement.
Other major projects in the Quincy area are:
º Resurfacing, shoulder reconstruction and a milled rumble strip on 6 miles of U.S. 24, from 0.1 mile east of Ill. 96 north to 0.1 mile east of Old U.S. 24 in Fowler; culvert repairs and culvert replacements at Frazier Creek 1.7 miles west of Interstate 172; and crossing ditches 1.6 miles and 0.5 mile west of I-172. These projects are programmed during FY 2014-2019 at a cost of $5.7 million. Of this total, a culvert replacement is programmed at Frazier Creek Tributary, 1.7 miles west of I-172, in FY 2014 at a cost of $1 million.
º Resurfacing 6.4 miles of Ill. 57, from south of York Street in Quincy to 0.8 mile south of Laaker Road north of Marblehead in Adams County; a new bridge deck at Payson Avenue 0.5 mile south of U.S. 24; and bridge rehabilitation including a new bridge deck at Curtis Creek, 1.6 miles south of U.S. 24. These projects are programmed during FY 2015-2019 at a cost of $6 million.
º Widening and resurfacing on 2.4 miles of Ill. 96 from 0.2 mile north of the Adams County line to Old Ill. 57 in Pike County. Projects are programmed in FY 2014 at a cost of $4.8 million.
º Realigning a taxiway to meet current standards and increase safety at Quincy Regional Airport -- the taxiway is too close to the runway to meet FAA regulations. The estimated cost for the project is $1,164,000.
Projects elsewhere in Western Illinois include:
º Land acquisition on U.S. 67/Ill. 110/336 (Northeast Macomb Bypass), from north of Springlake Road to U.S. 136 (east) northeast of Macomb, is programmed during FY 2015-2019 at a cost of $1.4 million.
º An archaeological survey from U.S. 136 northeast of Macomb to Illinois 101 and engineering for contract plans from north of Industry to Illinois 101 are programmed during FY 2015-2019 at a cost of $3.2 million. SAFETEA-LU provided $1.6 million in HPP funds for this corridor.
º Engineering for contract plans on Illinois 336 (Macomb to Peoria), from west of Hanna City to Interstate 474 in Peoria County, is programmed during FY 2015-2019 at a cost of $2.1 million. SAFETEA-LU provided $5.2 million in HPP funds and $2 million in TI funds for this corridor.