4 states announce major project developments


Four states have announced major developments in transportation projects this week.

Projects in Montana, North Carolina, Illinois and Arkansas were pushed forward, with most receiving a significant amount of funds.


A $15.6 million reconstruction project is underway on the notoriously dangerous Highway 80 on Montana’s Highwood Mountains, the Great Falls Tribune reports.

Known for sliding out of position, the two-and-a-half mile stretch is nicknamed Arrow Creek Slide.

The Arrow Creek Slide project will involve installing a drainage composed of culverts, side-channels and 504 soil stabilization anchor blocks weighing 44,000 pounds each.

According to the report, this project is unlike anything the Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) has ever performed.


The Illinois Tollway announced Thursday that its board of directors has approved a total of $145.1 million in construction contracts, bringing the number of construction and engineering contracts awarded in 2014 to nearly $744 million.

Among the contracts awarded on Thursday were $104 million for work on the $3.4 billion Elgin O’Hare Western Access (EOWA) Project, as well as contracts for interchange and wetland mitigation work on the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) Rebuilding and Widening Project and a contract to build a green maintenance facility on the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) in Alsip.

The board approved the following contracts:

  • A $64 million contract to Judlau Contracting Inc. in Lisle, Ill., for interchange construction to connect I-290 and Illinois Route 390 as part of the EOWA Project

  • A $21.9 million contract to Aldridge Electric in Libertyville, Ill., for intelligent transportation system and toll plaza construction on Illinois Route 390 from Lake Street/U.S. Route 20 to I-290 as part of the EOWA Project

  • A $21.8 million contract to F.H. Paschen, S.N. Nielsen & Associates LLC in Chicago, Ill., for maintenance facility construction on the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) in Alsip

  • An $18.3 million contract to Lorig Construction Co. in Des Plaines, Ill., for Illinois Route 390 earthwork and bridge construction over Salt Creek and Mittel Boulevard as part of the EOWA Project

  • A $10.7 million contract to William Charles Construction Co. LLC in Loves Park, Ill., for reconstruction of the Genoa Road Interchange on I-90

  • A $7.1 million contract to Herlihy Mid-Continent Co. in Romeoville, Ill., for wetland restoration at the Forest Preserves of Cook County Orland Grassland South site as part of the I-90 Rebuilding and Widening Project

  • A $776,000 contract to Broadway Electric Inc. in Elk Grove Village, Ill., for electrical system upgrades at the Tollway’s headquarters in Downers Grove

  • A $487,000 contract to Broadway Electric Inc. in Elk Grove Village, Ill., for truck scale installation at the maintenance facility on I-294 in Hillside

Click here for more Illinois Tollway news.

North Carolina

North Carolina Transportation Secretary Tony Tata said Thursday that about $350 million worth of projects are underway in the Cape Fear region, the Fayetteville Observer reports.

Tata said one of the “strongest needs” is Interstate 295, also dubbed the Fayetteville Outer Loop. He noted that a section of the loop from Bragg Boulevard to Murchison Road is expected to be completed in July.

He also said that on Wednesday he signed bills for Outer Loop paving projects and the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) is advertising a request for bids on those projects.

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Tata said other pending projects include the Outer Loop from Cliffdale Road to the All American Freeway, a widening project on Ray Road from N.C. 210 to Overhills Road and an interchange projects at the N.C. 87 and U.S. 701 intersection in Bladen County.


The U.S. Department of Transportation has officially designated a portion the highway between Alma and Bella Vista as Interstate 49, Arkansas News reports. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) officials and local and national leaders on Wednesday gathered at the site to celebrate.

Fort Chaffee Redevelopment Authority Executive Director Ivy Owen referred to the designation as a “significant event” for the project.

“This generates the momentum we need to complete this,” Owen said in the report.

AHTD Commissioner Dick Trammel said a 6.5-mile section of the project is almost complete and expected to be open to traffic by the end of this year. The entire project is 80 percent complete and so far has cost $1.2 billion.

Along with the ceremony for the Interstate designation, officials launched the “I-49 Build the Bridge!” campaign, which pushes for secure funding for a 13-mile portion of I-49 near Chaffee Crossing.

With insolvency of the Highway Trust Fund looming (U.S. DOT projects the fund to run out of money by the end of August) and uncertainty surrounding a new highway bill, state transportation officials are using the campaign to urge state and federal lawmakers to look for ways to fund the highway system.

“The highway department is dedicated to completing this project, as long as federal funding resumes,” Former state representative Ed Thicksten said in the Arkansas News report. “We’re hopeful that the state and federal governments will be able to alleviate some of the pressures we have with that.”