The Jane Byrne interchange after construction The Illinois Department of Transportation received top honors among Midwest states in the American’s Transportation Awards for its commitment to revitalizing state infrastructure and enhancing quality of life for every community.

After nine years and over $896 million in funding used to support the project, construction on the Jane Byrne and Weber Road interchanges brought IDOT recognition for improving traffic mobility and accommodating the increasing traffic volume.

The project makes state history with innovative changes, including a diverging-diamond design on Weber Road by reconfiguring the interchange with Interstate 55. The Jane Byrne project involved rebuilding several bridges to make way for wider sidewalks and bike lanes, developments to Peoria Street that transformed the area into an expansive walkway, and adding an elevator to the Chicago Transit Authority’s Blue Line Station for customers with disabilities.

IDOT’s prestigious award is sponsored by the American of State Highway and Transportation Officials, AAA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in recognition for their steadfast determination in forging sustainable state infrastructure and remedying economic and social concerns.

This significant project and esteemed award is a testament to IDOT’s efforts in being at the forefront of innovation in our state and throughout our communities.

An electric aircraft with six propellors on top.Continuing its commitment to technological innovation, the city of Chicago plans to offer its first air taxi route between O’Hare International Airport and Vertiport Chicago in 2025. The announcement from Archer Aviation Inc. and United Airlines calls the method of transportation a “safe, sustainable, low noise and cost-competitive alternative to ground transportation.”

Vertiport Chicago, which is North America’s largest vertical aircraft takeoff and landing facility, is located near the Chicago Loop and was selected for its convenient and accessible location. From there, passengers will be able to travel via aircraft to and from O’Hare in about 10 minutes — saving a significant amount of time that is often spent stuck in the city’s rush hour traffic.

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Bird's eye view of the Interstate 74 bridge over the Mississippi River. Each year, state transportation projects are celebrated and recognized through America's Transportation Awards – and an Illinois bridge came home as a winner. The awards recognize America's best transportation projects – those that prioritize safety, maximize accessibility, utilize resources effectively and incorporate innovative elements such as green space, bike paths, technology and access to public transit.

Last month, judges for the 2022 Midwest Region awards announced that the Interstate 74 Corridor Project, which connects Iowa to Illinois via a multi-use bridge over the Mississippi River, won top honors in the Quality of Life and Community Development category.

For this project, the Illinois and Iowa Departments of Transportation teamed up to take on the task of upgrading the 86-year-old bridge, which was in need of repair. The project was completed and fully opened to traffic on Dec. 2, 2021, and now carries nearly half of all traffic in the Quad Cities region. It was the biggest construction project in the cities' history, with a budget of $981 million.

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23275 IDOT Ash Street underpass photo1It’s no secret that cities are better when they’re efficient and less divided. One infrastructure project in Springfield that attempts to increase efficiency and bring neighborhoods together was recognized by the American Public Work Association.

On Monday, the Illinois Department of Transportation announced that the APWA had selected the Ash Street underpass in Springfield as one of its “Project of the Year.” This award recognizes achievement in management and administration of public works projects across the United States.

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Illinois roadsA new study shows that young Illinoisans are some of the best teenage drivers in the nation. According to financial writer Adam McCann and WalletHub’s research, Illinois has been ranked 9th in the nation for teen driver safety. Rankings are based on several criteria, including teen driver fatality rates, average cost of car repairs and the presence of impaired driving laws.

The report suggests that Illinois driving laws, which WalletHub ranks 6th in the nation, are one of the main causes for the state’s high ranking. A few important tips to keep in mind according to the experts from the study include, keeping night driving to a minimum, simple incentives for safe driving and avoid using any sort of device while behind the wheel. Click here for more information.