The City of Collinsville
125 South Center Street, Collinsville, IL 62234

 

OFFICE OF THE CITY MANAGER

March 28, 2003

Honorable James M. Inhofe, Chairman

Senate Environmental & Public Works Committee

Senate Office Building

Washington, DC 20510-3603

 

 

Dear Senator Inhofe:

 

This letter is written in support: of a proposed project to upgrade IL-159 through the City of Collinsville, Illinois, that I understand will be reviewed by the Committee on April 7, in Chicago.

 

This newly proposed project is actually the “missing link” of a State of Illinois project to upgrade IL-159 from Fairview Heights;, Illinois through Collinsville, and onto Edwardsville, Illinois. The overall widening of IL-159 is in the State’s long-range plan, which did not include this project. It is my understanding that this segment will be included in the MPO’s Transportation Improvement Program.

 

The State of Illinois is currently in the process of upgrading IL-159 to five (5) lanes from the north and from the south of Collinsville. This will leave a 2 1/2 mile strip with just an existing two (2) lane width through the City of Collinsville. Congestion on IL-159 is a daily phenomenon in Collinsville and future relief cannot occur without an upgrade of the existing two (2) lanes. This narrowing, in my opinion, also reduces economic development opportunities (business), as vehicles will bypass Collinsville on other intrastate and interstate roadways. It also defeats the regional purpose to move traffic freely north and south between Fairview Heights and Edwardsville, which are vibrant centers of commerce, located in St. Clair County and Madison County, respectively.

 

The project estimates range from $2 to $4 million for Phase I/Phase II engineering, and from $15 to $35 million for engineering, land acquisition and construction, depending on which option is finally approved.

 

We ask for your help in providing any assistance that you can give with regard to this study and upgrade of IL-159 to current standards. Thank you in advance for your kind consideration.

 

Sincerely,

 

Henry Sinda, City Manager

City of Collinsville