New Elgin-O'Hare ramps opening this weekend

State and local transportation officials will be opening three much-anticipated ramps connecting Route 53 (westbound I-290) to Route 390 this weekend after a ribbon-cutting Friday.

The ramps are part of the Elgin-O'Hare Expressway project to make O'Hare International Airport accessible from the western suburbs and to build a new tollway around the airport's western flank. The completion of the full project is years away.

Commuters on Route 53 have watched the dramatic progress of construction at the new interchange, where girders and cranes have been arranged like a giant erector set.

The project is a joint effort between the Illinois Tollway Authority, Illinois Department of Transportation and DuPage County. The ramps are part of a $3.4 billion interchange reconstruction project that is expected to be completed in 2017.

Eventually, Route 390 will also become a tollway.

On hand for the opening will be DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin, IDOT Secretary Randy Blankenhorn and a bevy of tollway officials.

Mark Welsh/ 2014Construction of new tollway ramps at I-290 and the Elgin-O'Hare Expressway has been a diversion for drivers for more than a year. Three of the ramps will open to drivers this weekend.
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