Roundabout planned for Route 20 and Reinking Road

  • Elgin City Council members Wednesday approved a conceptual plan for a roundabout to be installed at the sharp curve on Route 20 at Reinking Road. Pingree Grove, developer Shodeen Group and the Illinois Department of Transportation also endorse the plan.

      Elgin City Council members Wednesday approved a conceptual plan for a roundabout to be installed at the sharp curve on Route 20 at Reinking Road. Pingree Grove, developer Shodeen Group and the Illinois Department of Transportation also endorse the plan. JOHN STARKS | Staff Photographer

  • Elgin and Pingree Grove, along with Shodeen Group, the developer of the yet-to-be-built Pingree Creek subdivision, and the Illinois Department of Transportation have all agreed on a conceptual plan to build a roundabout on Route 20 at Reinking Road, where there is a sharp curve. Here is a conceptual rendering.

    Elgin and Pingree Grove, along with Shodeen Group, the developer of the yet-to-be-built Pingree Creek subdivision, and the Illinois Department of Transportation have all agreed on a conceptual plan to build a roundabout on Route 20 at Reinking Road, where there is a sharp curve. Here is a conceptual rendering. Courtesy Shodeen Group

 
 
Updated 8/11/2016 6:56 PM

At last there is a plan -- installing a roundabout -- to mitigate traffic at the sharp curve along Route 20 at Reinking Road, at the border between Elgin and Pingree Grove. Now, it's all about figuring out how to pay for it.

Elgin City Council members Wednesday approved the conceptual plan, which the Pingree Grove village board endorsed in June. Also on board are Shodeen Group, the developer of the yet-to-be-built Pingree Creek subdivision alongside the intersection, and the Illinois Department of Transportation, which has jurisdiction of Route 20, officials said.

 

"What we are trying to do is to reach an agreement so we can spur the Shodeen development and get that moving," Elgin City Manager Rick Kozal said. "Our options are limited."

Gianna Urgo, IDOT public information officer, declined to comment. "We will defer to the village" of Pingree Grove, she wrote via email without further explanation.

Shodeen Group President David Patzelt said he was pleased an agreement was reached.

Pingree Creek's annexation agreement was approved in 2004; the 780-acre subdivision was to include 2,700 homes and 12 acres for commercial development. The developer will be working on a revised land plan to accommodate the roundabout, Patzelt said.

"Roundabouts are a long-term economical, ecological and traffic calming benefit, to not only these two local communities but to anybody using that roadway," he said. "In the short term, roundabouts are more expensive and potentially consume more land than traditional intersections."

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The sharp curve has been the site of several accidents over the years, including the rollover crash of a semitrailer truck that killed the driver's 12-year-old daughter in April 2015.

The hope is that all the parties involved -- Elgin, Pingree Grove, Shodeen and IDOT -- will contribute some money to the estimated $2.2 million project, Patzelt said. The estimate was done by Engineering Enterprises Inc., Pingree Grove's engineering consultant, and does not include engineering or any right-of-way acquisition, he said.

Other funding sources will be explored, such as the Kane County Department of Transportation and the Kane/Kendall Council of Mayors, which disburses federal money via its surface transportation program, officials said.

Two years ago, Elgin had endorsed the idea of reconfiguring Route 20 to build a gentler curve, but Pingree Grove turned that down.

Absent a roundabout or a gentler curve, the remaining alternative would have been a traffic light, Elgin Community Development Director Marc Mylott said. But that would impede the flow of traffic and most likely prompt IDOT to build a Route 20 bypass in 15 or 20 years, which in turn would hurt commercial development at Pingree Creek, Mylott said.

Pingree Grove Trustee Bernie Thomas said he's concerned about the effects of the roundabout on The Outpost Tavern, on Route 20 just west of the curve. Patzelt said the restaurant itself wouldn't be affected but its current large driveway entrance would have to be "better defined."

The tavern's owners did not respond to a request for comment.

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