While Rolling Meadows Mayor Tom Rooney insists a majority of the city council supports expanding a rural-flavored stretch of Meacham Road to three lanes, an official vote on the plan will wait until at least January.
Residents along the road have opposed expansion during two years of discussions, which included the Illinois Department of Transportation suggesting it should be as wide as five lanes. However, IDOT is now on record as saying two lanes of traffic and a turning lane will probably work. Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg and Palatine Township have jurisdiction over the land along the route of Meacham/Plum Grove Road between Emerson and Algonquin Road.
City staff sent surveys to the same 192 homes that received questionnaires in 2011, handed out 500 surveys to people who travel the road during morning rush hour and will send more to a broader range of Rolling Meadows residents, Fred Vogt, director of public works, told the council Tuesday night.
The surveys are due Dec. 20, and results should be available early in the new year, he said.
"Straw votes show the majority of the council wants to proceed with the three-lane option. It is our intention at least at this point to continue," Rooney said. However, he and the council would oppose any wider road, he said.
Some aldermen have expressed concerns about the $125,000 the city would spend for a Phase 1 engineering study, which would deal with issues such as whether any residents' land would be needed. Vogt said if any land beyond the current right of way is needed, it will probably be only at intersections.
IDOT has offered to pay about $2.6 million of the $7 million project, and a federal grant would cover $4.7 million. Rolling Meadows and Schaumburg would pay the rest and be responsible for future maintenance.
Vogt said he is talking with staff of Palatine Township about whether that body would contribute toward the project and maintenance. Eleven percent of the affected road is in the township.
If the council approves a letter of intent, an intergovernmental agreement would be negotiated that would include giving the two municipalities the ability to opt out of the project at any point in the engineering phases, and specifically if the planned width of the road changed, Vogt said.
Maintaining the Salt Creek Bridge would probably be Schaumburg's responsibility, he said.