McHenry County started its 2022 construction program this week, which could total almost $13 million, officials said.
The projects are broken up into two categories, including safety improvements at various intersections, and paving work, the McHenry County Division of Transportation said in a news release. Each category will have its own contractor, said Scott Hennings, assistant director of transportation for the county.
County Board Chairman Mike Buehler, R-Crystal Lake, said Monday the program is a “much-needed investment.”
“Anytime there’s construction involved it can be a nuisance,” he said. “But I think we get far less complaints long term if we’re maintaining them instead of letting them fall apart.”
County paving, which will be the bulk of this year’s work, started this week and will cost about $9.2 million. Work will start with the eastbound part of Algonquin Road from Cedar Ridge Drive to Meyer Drive, which is about a 1.5-mile stretch, Hennings said.
Work along Randall Road from County Line Road to Harnish Drive, about a half-mile stretch, also is expected.
In August, the county will pave the westbound side of Algonquin Road, going from Route 47 to Harvest Gate, which is about a 4.3-mile stretch of road. Work on the paving projects is expected to be completed by late September, according to the release.
While the total distance of lanes across these three projects comes in at north of eight miles, these roads are wider than ones typically controlled by the state or the municipalities, Hennings said.
Algonquin, as an example, is five lanes. This means a 1.5-mile stretch adds up to about 7.5 miles total, while the 4.3-mile stretch comes out to 21.5 miles of lane work. For Randall Road, which is six lanes, the half-mile stretch comes out to three additional miles.
As a result of the work, motorists can expect intermittent lane closures, but the county is not planning on closing any of the roads entirely, Hennings said.
The stretches of Algonquin being worked on see anywhere from 22,300 to 30,800 daily vehicles, traffic counts from the Illinois Department of Transportation show. The stretch of Randall Road sees about 40,300.
Resurfacing will be funded through the state motor fuel tax and the Regional Transportation Authority sales tax, Hennings said.
Many of the intersection safety improvements, totaling $3.2 million, will include installing flashing yellow arrow signals, crosswalk improvements and interconnecting traffic signals, according to the release.
That work will be done at several different intersections along Algonquin Road, some of which is along the paving work being planned, Hennings said.
Because of this conflicting work, it will be on the contractors to work with each other, Hennings said. It also will possibly result in some of the intersection work spilling over into 2023, though the bulk of the work will be completed this year, he said.
The county is expected to meet with the contractor later this week and will have a better timeline then, Hennings said.
The priority will be given to resurfacing since it disrupts traffic more, Hennings said.
“Drivers shouldn’t be impacted the same during the intersection work the same way they would be during the resurfacing work,” Hennings said.
Work at the intersection of Wilmot Road and Main Street in the village of Spring Grove also is planned.
Funding for the signal work comes from a federal Highway Safety Improvement Program grant, along with funds from the Rebuild Illinois capital plan, Hennings said.