A two-year, $37.7 million project to rebuild the Central Avenue overpass at the Stevenson Expressway is scheduled to begin Friday and will cause motorists who normally use the interchange to take detours.
Central Ave. will be reduced to one lane in each direction over the expressway to allow crews to begin the bridge rebuilding and widening, after which two ramps to the expressway will be closed, the Illinois Department of Transportation said today.
Motorists should expect delays and allow extra time for travel through this area, IDOT said. To avoid construction, IDOT recommends Central Ave. motorists use 47th St., Cicero Ave. and 39th St.
"We are anticipating significant delays for motorists," IDOT spokesman Guy Tridgell said. "If alternate routes are available we urge motorists to take them."
According to IDOT, by the morning of Monday, Sept. 12, weather permitting, the outbound I-55 exit ramp to Central Ave. and the inbound I-55 entrance ramp from Central Ave. will be closed for the next year while the ramps are rebuilt.
Detour routes will be posted. Central Ave. motorists seeking to access inbound I-55 will be directed to 39th and 47th streets to use the Cicero Ave. entrance ramp.
Outbound I-55 motorists seeking to access Central Ave. are urged to use the Cicero Ave. exit to reach Central Ave. via 39th and 47th streets.
A left turn lane for northbound Central Avenue traffic exiting to outbound I-55 will be maintained, but no left turn lane will be available for southbound Central Ave. traffic to inbound I-55 because of the ramp closure.
No lanes closures on I-55 are anticipated at this time, though some shoulder closures will be scheduled later in the project, IDOT said.