Final Wacker Drive phase to close Jackson
SUN-TIMES MEDIA WIRE June 13, 2012 3:38PM
Updated: June 13, 2012 3:38PM
One intersection will close and another will reopen next week as the $300 million Wacker Drive reconstruction project in the Loop enters its final phase.
On Monday, June 18, the Jackson Boulevard intersection at Wacker will close just as the Chicago Department of Transportation opens the new Monroe Street intersection.
Revive Wacker Drive, Part 2, a project to rebuild and modernize the 60-year-old roadway, remains on schedule to be completed by year’s end, a release from CDOT said. The project is modernizing the upper and lower levels of Wacker to make it safer and more efficient for motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.
On Monday, Jackson closes from Canal Street to Franklin Street, while Monroe will reopen to all traffic. The Adams Street intersection will remain closed into July, with the subsequent closure and reconstruction of the Van Buren intersection to begin later this summer, the release said.
“Our crews are making significant progress as we continue to meet the ambitious goals of this project,” CDOT Commissioner Gabe Klein said in the release.
On Friday, June 22, Van Buren between Wells and Franklin will become a two-way street for that block only to allow access to westbound I-290 for vehicles headed north on Franklin. That traffic had previously merged with the southbound Wacker ramps, the release said.
Later this summer, when Franklin is reopened from Harrison to Van Buren, northbound vehicles will turn east on Van Buren to Wells, then south to access I-290. In the previous configuration, there were two I-290 access ramps from Lower Wacker and Franklin that created a dangerous double-merge. The new layout will eliminate the Franklin ramp.
There will be bus reroutes as a result of the new closures and Metra will be making announcements on its trains, with pedestrian detour information at its transportation centers.