Road work ramps up in McHenry County

A guide to work sites, detours in McHenry County

Crews continue to work on the Algonquin Bypass over Algonquin Road on Tuesday. The $33.3 million project began in September 2012 and is expected to be completed this fall.
Crews continue to work on the Algonquin Bypass over Algonquin Road on Tuesday. The $33.3 million project began in September 2012 and is expected to be completed this fall.

Don’t let the impending completion of several county road projects fool you. There are more projects scheduled to start taking their place in the coming weeks.

Lots more.

Work is set to conclude before spring’s end on the $10.2 million headache that has been the intersection of Routes 31 and 176 in Crystal Lake, and the $4.2 million extension of Kruetzer Road in Huntley. But May means the start of work on Route 120 through McHenry, and on a roundabout in Johnsburg.

Several large-scale projects that started last year, like the Algonquin Western Bypass, are picking up the pace with the warm weather and are set to wrap up by this fall. But after this last winter we’ve been through, let’s not think about the next one if we can avoid it.

The following is a list of many of the significant road construction projects set to begin, continue or finish this year.

• ALGONQUIN WESTERN BYPASS: Budget more time if your travels take you through downtown Algonquin as work continues on the $33.3 million project.

Key components are the building of a 2.1-mile, four-lane highway around downtown to eliminate the infamous rush-hour bottleneck at the intersection of Routes 31 and 62.

Watch for workers and expect some delays at the bypass’ intersections with Route 31 north and south of downtown, and on Algonquin Road west of downtown as workers build the overpass and its diamond interchange.

• ROUTES 31 AND 120: Besides budgeting more time, you may want to adjust your household budget to include antacid in bulk if your commute takes you through McHenry.

Work is starting on a $7.2 million project to widen and resurface Route 120 from Front Street to Green Street, and Route 31 from Route 120 north to McCullom Lake Road. It includes improvement of the intersection and replacement of the bridge over the creek that feeds into the Fox River.

Watch for lane closures and frequent stops. The project is expected to be finished by November.

• JOHNSBURG ROUNDABOUT: Work is set to begin to build a roundabout intersection at Johnsburg and Chapel Hill roads. The $2.7 million project scheduled to be finished in September includes decorative lighting, landscaping and brick-paved crosswalks.

Starting Monday, eastbound Johnsburg Road will be closed between Spring Grove Road and Fairview Avenue, and westbound Johnsburg Road will be closed from Fairview Avenue to Chapel Hill Road. The road will be open to local traffic to maintain access to local businesses.

A lengthy posted detour will take drivers around via Routes 31 and 120 – yes, through the aforementioned work in McHenry – and Chapel Hill Road.

The work is the second phase of a project to improve Johnsburg Road. The first phase, which improved Johnsburg Road from Route 31 east to the roundabout, was finished earlier this year.

• INTERSTATE 90: Budget extra time if your commute involves Interstate 90, regardless of which direction you’re traveling.

Work will continue this year to improve a 37-mile segment of the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway between Elgin and Interstate 39 in Rockford. Eastbound lanes were improved last year, so traffic is being shifted to them so workers can improve the westbound lanes. That work should be finished by the end of the year.

But work has started this year to improve a 25-mile segment of I-90 from Elgin east to the Tri-State Tollway. That work is expected to be finished by the end of 2015.

The total cost of the project, meant to widen and improve I-90 between Rockford and O’Hare International Airport, is $2.5 billion.

• CHARLES MILLER ROAD: It won’t be until fall that work begins on the final phase of the widening of Charles Miller Road.

Workers will widen the road from the bridge west to Route 31 and improve the intersection of Miller Road, Route 31 and Bull Valley Road. Workers last year added another span to the bridge, doubling its lanes to four.

The county is still acquiring the needed land and an August bid letting is anticipated.

• ROUTE 176: Work is beginning in May to upgrade the intersection of Route 176 and Smith Road in unincorporated Nunda Township. The $1.5 million project is expected to be finished by November.

• ROUTE 14 IN CARY: Watch for possible delays as work begins this May on a $1.5 million project to improve Jandus Cutoff from Route 14 to the Union Pacific Railroad tracks. The project is expected to be finished by September.

• HARVARD REPAVING: The McHenry County Division of Transportation plans during this construction season to mill and resurface stretches of Flat Iron, Airport, Altenberg and Alden roads near Harvard. Keystone Road west of Richmond also will be repaved.

• OTHER CONCLUDING PROJECTS: Work is scheduled to wrap up in June on the $1.6 million resurfacing of Route 22 between Fox River Grove and Route 12, and in July for the $2.9 million reconstruction and widening of Prospect Street between Routes 20 and 176 in Marengo.

On the Net

You can sign up at NWHerald.com/newsletter to get a weekly email update starting Memorial Day weekend on road projects throughout construction season.

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