Options Laid Out By IDOT Reps For Replacement of Joe Page Bridge

By Benjamin Cox on April 23, 2024 at 9:19am

The Illinois Department of Transportation continues its move forward on replacing the Joe Page Bridge in Hardin.

The bridge carries Illinois Routes 16 and 100 over the Illinois River from Calhoun into the southernmost portion of Greene County, and is one of the only routes into and out of Calhoun County. The draw bridge was built in 1930 and is nearing its mechanical end of life and is currently a major cost to the state to repair and maintain.

Location Studies Engineer in IDOT’s District 8 Office, Cindy Stafford says that the second public meeting was held on March 21st at Calhoun High School: “We recently had our second public meeting where we brought to the public about 8 different corridors or bands that are initial starting points of what we are going to begin to evaluate to see if any of them are feasible or reasonable for replacing the bridge. The purpose of that public meeting was to get feedback from the public to see if they think those are good ideas to start looking at, if they think some of them need to be modified, or if there is another kind of band or study area they wanted us to look at in terms of corridors for replacement of the bridge.”

Stafford says that IDOT officials are currently in the midst of evaluating the feedback received from the meeting. Stafford says a working group will now begin creating alternatives to the 8 options presented to the public to figure out what works and what doesn’t: “These corridors are about 600-800 feet wide, so there is a lot of variation in terms of things that we can do with different alternatives in terms of those corridors. Some of the corridors may have fatal flaws so they may just drop out from evaluation. This is kind of that first filtering out of those options that we’re doing right now. We are going to be looking at the topography of the area to see how those corridors can access existing roadways on the east and west side of the river. We are going to look to see how those corridors work with the flow of the river, what does it do to river height, and the hydraulics of the river. We are also going to look and see what it would do to traffic patterns for both sides of the river.”

Stafford says once the alternatives are studied for each of the 8 corridor options are completed, another public meeting will be held to show which ones have fallen out of consideration due to fatal flaws and which ones needed updating. She says that after the third public meeting, another filtering down to preferred corridors will take place. She says the next meeting will likely occur later this summer or early Fall.

Stafford encourages any landowners and residents in the area to stay engaged with the process. Comment forms and more information regarding the mailing list can be found online at joepagebridge.com or call IDOT’s District 8 Office in Collinsville at (618) 346-3245.