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updated: 8/21/2013 1:14 PM

Rolling Meadows postpones Meacham Road expansion discussion

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  • Rolling Meadows leaders have postponed for two months a decision on the proposed expansion of Meacham Road between Algonquin Road and Emerson Avenue. Officials say the delay will give them more time to study traffic patterns and coordinate plans with the Illinois Department of Transportation.

      Rolling Meadows leaders have postponed for two months a decision on the proposed expansion of Meacham Road between Algonquin Road and Emerson Avenue. Officials say the delay will give them more time to study traffic patterns and coordinate plans with the Illinois Department of Transportation.
    Daily Herald File Photo by Bill Zars/bzars@dailyhe

 

The Rolling Meadows City Council has postponed for 60 days its discussion and vote on plans to expand Meacham Road from Algonquin Road to Emerson Avenue.

Fred Vogt, the city's director of public works, asked for the delay so staff can study traffic projections and meet again with representatives of the Illinois Department of Transportation, especially in light of the decision to build westbound ramps to the Jane Addams Tollway (I-90) at Meacham.

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IDOT staff has indicated they will consider expanding the two-lane road to only three lanes rather than the four or five it originally suggested.

However, Vogt said traffic projections are "on the cusp," and Rolling Meadows needs to be sure IDOT officials still think two lanes plus a center left-turn lane are feasible.

Residents along Rolling Meadows' stretch of Meacham, which has a tree-lined, rural feel, have objected to its widening. Aldermen seem split on the issue, with Mayor Tom Rooney saying he would not support any expansion wider than three lanes.

About 20 residents attended Tuesday's meeting. Jay Andrew, a leader of a group called Residents Against Meacham Expansion, questioned council members about how many trees would be lost and how much land would be taken from homeowners.

Those questions, Vogt said, can only be answered after preliminary engineering studies. He said additional land needs would be minimal if the road is expanded only to three lanes.

The issue will be back on the council's agenda in October or November.

Under IDOT's proposal Rolling Meadows and Schaumburg would split approximately $250,000 of the $7 million cost of improving Meacham, but then the municipalities would take over responsibility for the road's maintenance. A federal grant would cover about $4.7 million, and the state would pay about $2.6 million.

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