Planning agency predicts more traffic on Laraway Road in Joliet

A regional planning agency expects more traffic on Laraway Road even as trucks take an alternative route to a future Houbolt Road bridge in coming years.

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning has identified the Union Pacific railroad crossing on Laraway as one among 47 in the Chicago area where improvements are needed for safety.

Back-ups at the crossing occur with about 75% of the traffic coming from trucks, Tom Murtha, senior planner with CMAP, told the Joliet City Council Public Service Committee last week.

"We expect when the Houbolt Road bridge is completed long-term traffic is not going to go down but up as people use it as a commuter route," Murtha told the committee.

The Houbolt Road bridge is planned to provide semitrailers a direct route to Interstate 80 from the CenterPoint Intermodal Center.