County provides feasibility details for Rt. 53 extension
Lake County Divisions of Transportation (DOT) Director Paula Trigg recently gave a video presentation providing details on the feasibility of the county's plan to extend Route 53.
The project is motivated primarily by a need to accommodate growth projections over the coming decades.
"At Lake County DOT we work with the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning to identify population growth and transportation capacity as we work to identify roadway segments that will need to be widened in the long range transportation plan," Trigg said. "We call that plan our 2040 plan."
Trigg said research for the 2040 plan indicated a 30 percent increase in population and traffic congestion in Lake County over the next 25 years. To meet that need without the Route 53 extension, Trigg said the county would need to widen 56.2 miles of other roadways and add 14.6 miles of new bypass roads to have the same effect. Those alternatives would also cost several hundred thousand dollars more.
The proposed Route 53 tollway will be paid for through tolls and bond measures as a means of bypassing heavy reliance on state funding. The project also proposes retaining a quarter of real estate taxes on new non-residential developments to help maintain and improve the environment around the new roadway.
The proposed Route 53/120 extension would be a four-lane, 25-mile boulevard connecting the current end of Route 53 to Route 120, where it would fork to connect U.S. Route 12 with I-94.