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Morton Times-News - Morton, IL
  • Letters to the Editor: Dec. 5, 2012

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  • Committee encourages attending Eastern Bypass meeting
     
    Dear Editor,
     
    To the Community of Washington: IDOT will convene the 11th meeting of the Community Advisory Group (CAG) for the Eastern Bypass Study 6 p.m. Thursday, (Dec. 6), Countryside Banquet Center.
     
    IDOT will present a status update, explain the next steps in the process, and discuss reducing the number of  corridors.
     
    The selection of the corridor is a vital step in the CAG process and I urgently request your participation as the process continues.
     
    Initially, 16 potential corridors were identified for consideration. Currently, four corridors remain to create an Eastern Bypass which would begin at Interstate 74 near Morton, then travel north and west to cross the Illinois River and connect to Illinois Route 6, north of Peoria. The selection of even one of the remaining corridors, Pleasant Hill Road 2 (P2), Tennessee Avenue 6 (T6), Main Street 10 (M10), and Dee Mack Road 13 (D13), will impact the community of Washington.
     
    P2 and T6, west of Washington, will separate a substantial portion of our community. Either corridor will divide the City of Washington from its’ Sunnyland community and School District 50.
     
    Either corridor will negatively impact the year-round outdoor ministry of Camp Good News and the forested areas of the Caterpillar Proving Ground, designated as a member of the Illinois Acres for Wildlife, Illinois Dept. of Conservation. Estimated cost to build P2, $667 million and T6, $648 million. Proximity effects for residential homeowners is 884 or 853, respectively.
     
    M10 and D13, east of Washington. While they would not separate our community, they will consume valuable farm land in the amounts of 1391 acres or 1390 acres.
     
    The Eastern Bypass is planned as a ‘limited access’ highway. All of the identified corridors would result in only two interchanges in our community, one at Business 24 and one at the 24 bypass. The assumption that the Eastern Bypass would increase business due to more connectivity may not be a reality as the P2 and T6 interchanges at business 24 are already heavily populated residential / business areas.
     
    The CAG meeting on Dec. 6 is a public meeting. I encourage you to attend and hear the facts and discussion on this important topic. If you have an opinion, idea, or question you can email Mike Lewis at Michael.L.Lewis2@illinois.gov and visit www.eastern bypass.com for contacting members of CAG.
     
    Get involved in the discussion and study of this important topic before it is too late. The building of an Eastern Bypass in one of the four above mentioned corridors is going to drastically effect the community of Washington.
    Page 2 of 2 - Jim Dunnan
    CAG Member for Controlled Growth

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