The Illinois Department of Transportation is seeking to gather public input into the planned Illinois Route 3 Connector project in Madison and St. Clair counties. To that end, IDOT will host an open house from 4-7 p.m. at the Clyde C. Jordan Senior Citizens Center, 6755 State St., East St. Louis. on Tuesday, Nov. 28.
The planned road improvements will be done within Madison, Fairmont City and East St. Louis. IDOT officials will present their preferred design for the improvements and obtain public input. No formal presentation will be made at the open house, though a public forum will be held during the meeting at 6:30 p.m.
“We’re going over the different alternatives to see what best fits the (local) community,” IDOT spokesperson Dawn Johnson said of the event. “You can also mail in your comments, and we’ll have a form on our website,” Johnson said. The public hearing is accessible to people with disabilities. To request special accommodations, please contact IDOT at 618-346-3161, or 888-642-3449 TDD at least seven days before the meeting.
The “Route 3 Connector project” is intended to improve the transportation flow and connectivity between Illinois 203 and Illinois 3, as well as from Collinsville Road to Illinois 3/North First Street. The planned work will include approximately 1.4 miles of road between Collinsville Road in East St. Louis to Illinois Route 203 in Madison County. The new roadway with be two-lane, with a “shared use path.”
A proposed, but unfunded four-lane extension of that road remains a possibility.
Total cost of the current project, which is fully funded in IDOT’s 2024-29 plan, is $80 million. IDOT is currently working with the Federal Highway Administration to complete the required Preliminary Engineering and Environmental Study for the roadwork.
“We’re nearing completion of the Phase One, the environmental study,” Johnson said. “After that we can start with implementation of Phase Two, the contractual planning.”
Phase Two is expected to take between 18 and 24 months. Johnson said 2026 is a fair estimation for the start of Phase three, but that “details won’t be known until design work is finished.”
The planned roadway improvement is part of the massive Rebuild Illinois capital program. The Pritzker administration is touting the $41 billion, six-year campaign as the largest infrastructure construction program in state history, focused on roads, bridges, aviation, rail and other transportation infrastructure. The state has budgeted $305.5 million for new construction related to all work on Illinois Route 3.