Archive for the ‘IDOT’ Category


IDOT has confirmed via a press release to what the construction VMS boards were advertising yesterday: a full WB 270 closure from Route 3 to the I-55 interchange in Troy. Crews from Micro-Surfacing Contractors LLC will be out to do the westbound half of 270, which is known to be in even worse shape than eastbound, and the consequences of missing the 05:00 Monday deadline is even worse than eastbound.  (HINT:  crews barely got EB 270 open in time)  The westbound closures are expected to have a much more disruptive effect than eastbound for various reasons, some which are obvious and some of it because of other road work on alternative routes that can come back and haunt IDOT in the event of an epic fail eastbound.

While access to the bridges do remain, it must be done via the back road system:

270MadCoAlts

The best alternate route is New Poag Road, and detours will be marked along 255 and New Poag Road.  The better detour is using a combination of Route 3, New Poag Road, 255, and Route 162, as IDOT has been bold enough to start construction projects on 55/70 and that includes a closure of 55/70 EB from 64 to 255 this weekend as well.  (There is closures on Route 143 just east of Route 3 that IDOT boldly planned a 270 EB detour route but made an about face the morning of the 11th.)

IMG_2786

Keep in mind this closure takes place right before the solar eclipse on August 21, and while the admins have not made a lot of mention about it because this area is largely on the fringes of that viewing area, it is certain that heavier than normal traffic may occur between 09:00 to 16:00.  A separate post regarding the eclipse will be made on Sunday, however, as the admins see the weekend closures as a larger priority.

IDOT has announced off-peak lane closures for westbound 270 at the river bridge on various dates in the next week from 09:00 to 15:00, weather permitting.

The patches that had failed or about to fail.

The bottom line is to expect delays starting at the canal bridge and a reduced speed limit that will be enforced by the ISP.

Before the information with the closures gets posted, the morning peak this morning was marred with two incidents near the river bridge but within a mile of each other:

Only the one closest to Riverview happened within view of the cameras. This incident did not cause the problems until the crews were in the process of clearing it because there was a second incident about a mile to the east of that one.

Both incidents caused about 20-30 minutes in delays, but both happened in the month of August where the big ones are known to occur.

eb270closure

Now, the next subject is something that the admins posted photos on Saturday of the dates the EB 270 closure. It has now been confirmed by a IDOT press release, and while the bridges will remain open your access has been limited to a combination of New Poag Road and Route 3 OR Pontoon Road and Route 3.  IDOT plans to close EB 270 from Route 3 all the way to Troy next weekend weather permitting, presumably to replace that awful pavement that dates back to the late 1990s (WB 270 pavement is even worse than EB).  The problem is that with an event at Tri City Speedway on Friday evening, there could be hassle in getting to the bridge.  Chain of Rocks Road is an alternate if you are willing to use Maryville Road to cross the railroad tracks, but for the tractor-trailer drivers that utilize the Pontoon Beach distribution centers must use New Poag Road as an alternate as Pontoon Road is off limits to tractor-trailers except the ones that are making local deliveries along that street.

For the detours east of 255, it is mostly 162 and Governors Parkway.  This area, along with North County, is not known to have useful detour routes in the east-west direction.  New Poag Road ultimately goes into 157 and 143 into downtown Edwardsville.  If you are coming out of the Riverbend, it may be wiser to use the Clark Bridge and call it a day.

IDOT announced that starting July 30, there will be overnight restrictions on 270 between Route 3 and Troy, weather permitting.  One lane will be closed between 19:00 to 05:00 in random locations between MM 3 to MM 16 for the purpose of pavement repairs.  (They really need to resurface the entire mainline, not do band aids.)

Expect reduced speed limits (in Illinois you know they can have them up 24/7/365), heavier than normal police enforcement by the state cops, and delays that could go up to 30 minutes or even longer.  We already have an admin that makes regular use of this area during the overnight hours and as such expect the social media accounts to be occasionally monitored until midnight.  The admins do not want to hear about such and such happening while we were sleeping nonsense as there was plenty of that back in June during the overnight construction in North County.

UPDATE 09:45 7/28/17 – IDOT has confirmed via press release that there WILL be weekend closures related to this project but that weekend has not been announced.  When that weekend has been announced it will be posted within 24 hours.

The admins are aware that the third Saturday in September is the date the infamous Ride of the Century will take place – that event takes place during the afternoon hours.  A separate post will come a few days before that event.

Weather permitting, off peak daytime lane restrictions will happen on the river bridge from June 5 through June 8.

For Monday and Tuesday, one westbound lane will close from 09:00 to 15:00. Expect delays to begin near the Route 3 exit.

For Wednesday and Thursday, one eastbound lane will close from 08:00 to 15:00. Expect delays to begin near the Lilac exit.

Expect reduced speed limits on this section of 270 – and expect them to be enforced. Speaking of speed limits, we know this section is enforced on a regular basis as is:


This week is also the week where the DOT is conducting their annual safety check so truckers must take extra precautions and additional delays east of Route 3 may be encountered.

IMG_1550

Lane closures like this one will be in effect for WB 270 both Wednesday and Thursday

Weather permitting, IDOT crews will close the right lane on WB 270 at the river bridge between 09:00 to 12:00 Wednesday and 09:00 to 15:00 Thursday to make repairs to the bridge deck.

While crews are out expect reduced speed limits and delays if your trip goes through this section of 270.

Today the NWS gave us bad news and confirmed that the Mississippi River at Alton will go past the 29 foot threshold as early as Monday.  The bad news when the river hits that point is that the southbound lanes of 367 just south of the Clark Bridge start to flood and that usually renders the southbound direction of the Clark Bridge off limits.alton-apr30at1700

The projected crest is on Wednesday at or around the 33 foot mark.

Based on an recent MoDOT press conference held this evening, the NB lanes of 367 will be converted into two-way traffic and that will help with the heavier than normal traffic on this section of 270. However, this also means that there will be delays in both the AM and PM peak starting Monday afternoon and lasting likely through the end of the week. Either way, traffic on 270 will be heavier than normal for a few days, the canal bridge area is a known choke point, and plan on delays on both the Clark Bridge and the Chain of Rocks.

Weather permitting, there will be lane restrictions on EB/WB 270 between 255 and 157 on Sunday for the purpose of utility crews to finish a power pole replacement.  There could be full mainline blockages up to 15 minutes at random times during the day.  From 07:00 to 20:00 two lanes in each direction will be blocked, so plan on using 162 or New Poag Road to get around.

If you decide to go through 270, don’t be this guy getting busted allegedly doing 91 just to the east of Route 3:

OR the one that did at least 110:

The bottom line: expect reduced speed limits and expect them to be enforced.

Poor timing snow event for 1/5

Posted: 2017/01/04 in IDOT, MoDOT, Weather
Tags: , ,

oneinchofsnow


The NWS has predicted up to 4 inches of the white stuff for Thursday – and projected the stuff to fall in time for the morning peak:

Earlier this evening, MoDOT goes out and their #2 man in the district declares in a press conference to the local media there will be no pretreating of the roads prior to the event.

Instead they have urged the people to stay off the roads and likewise the Illinois State Police has issued a travel advisory for the I-64 and I-70 corridors:

With the lights on the river bridge out and the poor timing of the event, the admins decided to upgrade the risk factor to HIGH. The hilly 270 mainline up in North County is likely going to be terrible, and in the last winter event that hill east of 157 proved its ugly head like no other. Since the admins have honestly lost count of how many incidents that happened on that hilly mainline in recent years (it seems like it happens every season), anyone that has to go out in this stuff due to essential reasons needs to allow extra time and be prepared to be stuck. Temperatures in this event is expected to be in the teens and low 20s, which can make rock salt rather ineffective.

Just for good measure, the past snow events at poor times have yielded big problems so please lets not make a repeat of this mess:

OR this mess the last time MoDOT didn’t pretreat the roads, or for good measure the epic twitter feed:

Whatever happens tomorrow please allow a lot of extra time or just stay home. The evening peak will likely be just as dicey depending on when the snow exits.

escalated-quickly

Warning: There may be some strong words – the admins do not censor profanity.
As the admins have warned in the past, December is the time where the big incidents tend to occur. This incident happened on a clear night with dry roads.

The admins are counting our lucky stars that the kids were out of school this week on the Christmas vacation – otherwise this incident would had caused bigger traffic chaos. This one came the morning after one of the admins had a late night at the WWE event (and slept through the whole ordeal) and another admin was only able to post right before work and during a break.

Below the admins will simply let the social media feed do the talking:


We will go to see how he handled that emergency detour routes in a minute.


This next video was not shown on the air but it was some behind the scenes. Police were forcing westbound traffic off at Route 3.



The admins did not do a lot of tweeting during the incident, but the feed was loaded.

This incident knocked out the lighting system on the bridge, and the lights are still in the dark as the admins write this post.

5 hours bro

MoDOT was blocking EB 270 mainline traffic at 367 and blocked ramps to EB 270 from Bellefontaine, Lilac, and Riverview.
If you haven’t figured out by now, about two years ago before the canal bridge implosion the admins came up with the page regarding emergency detour routes. Since 143 leading up to the Clark Bridge was likely going to be awful because of this incident (construction in downtown Alton was going on had parts of Ridge Street blocked for the past few weeks), one of the only traffic reporters that was not on vacation this week spent the entire traffic segment bragging about the southern detour routes.  (Couple that we knew that went northern routes got around Alton on 140 and Homer Adams Parkway.)  It is clear that the page was working as intended and nobody was bitching about traffic in the Riverbend on social media.

The incident was the main attention of all three major tv stations, several newspapers, and a few radio stations (had to be a otherwise slow news morning for this incident to get that much attention):

This incident shut down 270 for 5 hours, long enough to ruin an entire morning peak.  It only took one mistake to cause this chaos, and luckily came when the schools were closed for Christmas vacation, people were blowing their remaining vacation time for the year (traffic was lighter than normal all week long), and the weather was quiet.  Had this one happened a week later this chaos could easily rivaled the one that happened 6 years ago. There was an secondary incident during this chaos, a minor one that happened on EB 270 on the bridge that was quickly cleared.

WB 270 was backed up to 111 when it was all said and done. EB 270 was backed up past Lilac and that was because MoDOT was deploying crowd control at 367.


The lights are now out so please use caution, especially if the river fog risk goes to medium or high. Right now the winds are strong enough to keep that threat low but this weekend will not bring favorable weather and next week is too far out to consider the threat.