Metro-East News

St. Clair County looks to take control of Front Street in East St. Louis

St. Clair County is preparing to take over jurisdiction of Front Street in East St. Louis.

As part of the county’s effort to make land along Front Street more attractive to economic development, the county, the state, federal government, and private businesses are partnering to rebuild Front Street.

Among those slated to contribute toward the project include Bunge, Casino Queen, Cargill, The Illinois Department of Transportation, the St. Clair County Transit District, the Metro East Park and Recreation District, and the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

The road needs to be under county jurisdiction for the project to qualify for state and federal economic development money, said Jim Fields, county engineer.

“We’re the only ones who are eligible for those funds,” Fields said.

The county also plans to designate the road as a truck route.

“It will be an improvement to get the trucks off of Riverview Drive, because they cause a lot of damage to that road,” Fields said.

The county’s transportation committee has passed a resolution that would take over jurisdiction of Front Street. The full county board is scheduled to consider the resolution later this month.

A bid opening for the construction project is expected to take place this summer, Fields said.

Left-turn lane on Scott-Troy Road

The St. Clair County Highway Department also has plans to put in a left-turn lane along Scott-Troy Road onto Hilltop Drive east of O’Fallon.

O’Fallon also will be doing work along Hilltop Drive as part of the improvements, Fields said.

Fields said the turn lane will help with traffic flow near the New Life in Christ Church.

There have been issues with traffic backups and accidents at the intersection, Fields said.

Work on this project, if approved by the full county board, is expected to begin in mid-April and take about six weeks to complete, Fields said.

The county board is scheduled to vote on a $265,500 contract with Kilian Corp. to carry out the project. The amount was about 10 percent more than the engineer’s estimate, but Fields recommended awarding the contract anyways.

“To re-bid it, I don’t think we’ll come back with a better price,” Fields said. “We were low on asphalt (costs) compared to what they all (contractors) bid.”

Jefferson Road repairs in Freeburg Township

Repair work along Jefferson Road east of Reinneck Road in Freeburg Township is planned. The road had a dip because of mine subsidence issues.

“Research has shown it has stopped,” Fields said.

If approved, the work would include raising the road to the proper level and fixing drainage along the road, Fields said.

The county board later this month is scheduled to vote on a $26,500 contract for Hank’s Excavating to complete the repair work, which would take about a month to complete, Fields said.

The bid came in below the $38,000 engineer’s estimate, Fields said.

Joseph Bustos: 618-239-2451, @JoeBReporter