Residents urged to comment on proposed alternatives by June 29

Forwarded from the Village of Oak Park,  June 20, 2012
Special I-290 Expansion News Report

Residents urged to comment on proposed alternatives by June 29

Oak Park residents are urged to make sure their voices are part of the discussions that will determine the future configuration of I-290 and its impact on quality of life in the community. As part of its effort to identify a preferred alternative for major reconstruction of the Eisenhower Expressway, the Illinois Department of Transportation is accepting public comments until June 29 on the latest version of its Alternatives Identification and Evaluation Report.  – click here to read the report: IDOT Report or go to: http://eisenhowerexpressway.com/pdfs/i290%20alternatives%20evaluation%20summary%202012%20may%2030%20tracked.pdf

Village officials continue to advocate a multi-modal solution – preferably a CTA Blue Line westward extension – that stays within the existing roadway trench. Such an approach should be accompanied by investments that enhance community connectivity across the Ike and improve pedestrian and bicycle access to CTA stations. Written comments may be submitted online at www.eisenhowerexpressway.com/informed or by e-mail to Mark.Peterson@illinois.gov. In addition to elements in the report readers may identify, Village officials are urging Oak Parkers to remember the following key issues residents raised following a presentation by IDOT officials at the June 11 Village Board meeting:
·        Every alternative proposed by IDOT includes highway expansion. Some combination of transit investments and pricing strategies that can significantly decrease congestion, enhance regional accessibility, improve environmental performance and diversify non-automobile transportation options would benefit all communities along the corridor.

·        The list of alternatives is being prioritized by IDOT without necessary evaluation of environmental impacts. Federal law requires that effective mitigation to avoid or reduce adverse environmental impacts be evaluated at the beginning of the process, not the middle or end, as in the current IDOT process.

·        Significant questions about the viability of high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes and high-occupancy toll (HOT) lanes are not included in the analysis. If the assumptions are wrong, or essential variables affecting traveler choice are not addressed, the claimed benefits are not reliable indicators of an alternative’s effectiveness.

·        The claim that converting a lane east of Austin Boulevard from general purpose to HOV/HOT will improve traffic flow in the remaining three lanes is highly suspect. Logically, taking a lane out of general use and requiring that traffic to be compressed into three lanes cannot possibly yield congestion-relief benefits.

For more information on the impact of an I-290 expansion, call 708.358.5791or e-mail cole@oak-park.us.


SEOPCO – South East Oak Park Community Organization
P.O. Box 1722
Oak Park, IL 60304-1722
www.seopco.org
seopco@gmail.com

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