Utica roundabout still on pace for spring 2023 finish

IDOT: Construction remains 2 months behind schedule

A half circle starts to appear on the roundabout at the intersection of Illinois 178 and U.S. Route 6 on Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022 in Utica.

Construction of the roundabout in Utica remains two months schedule, though Illinois Department of Transportation still thinks the traffic circle will be functional by spring.

Wednesday, IDOT switched the temporary traffic lights at U.S. Route 6 and Route 178 to make them blinking red. The intersection is again a four-way stop and will remain so until construction resumes next year.

In June, IDOT reported construction fell two months behind schedule thanks to labor strife and a shortage of construction materials. Wednesday, IDOT construction engineer Nate Sell said the timeline is roughly unchanged.

“The project is still about two months behind schedule,” Sell said. “Material availability slowed progress since June, but the contractor was able to make up that time thanks to the dry autumn weather.”

Sell said weather conditions will dictate when work can resume in 2023, but the goal still is to have the roundabout operational in spring 2023. Final touches such as landscaping and lighting would continue into early summer.

“2022 provided some challenges to the contractor to keep the project on schedule,” Sell said. “After dealing with some of the delays the project is about where we expected it would be.”

IDOT had initially hoped to have the roundabout functional by fall 2022; but IDOT always anticipated having touch-ups to address in early 2023.

The cost remains fluid, as well. The roundabout previously was tagged at $2.4 million, but inflation has the bottom line likely to rise when IDOT tabulates the totals upon completion.

For IDOT District 3 updates on Twitter, follow @IDOTDistrict3. View area construction details on IDOT’s traveler information map at www.GettingAroundIllinois.com.