Ground broken on effort to widen I-57 near Marion

MARION (AP) — A $10.6-million effort to widen a stretch of Interstate 57 near the southern Illinois city of Marion is under way.

Gov. Pat Quinn joined state and local officials Monday in breaking ground on the project that includes adding a third traffic lane to the highway between Marion and Johnston City.

Quinn calls the stretch of the freeway near Marion among the region's most critical.

The work will be done by Southern Illinois Asphalt Co. of Marion, which submitted the lowest bid. The Illinois Department of Transportation will manage the project, which is scheduled to be completed by December 2014.