Plan Review & Coordination Assistance: Elgin O’Hare / West Bypass
The Elgin O’Hare/West O’Hare Bypass (EO-WB) is a $3.4 billion highway that will provide access to Chicago O’Hare Airport from the west, and will also provide a Tollway link between I-294 and I-90 around the west side of O’Hare Airport.
The Illinois Tollway will be constructing a six-lane divided roadway, with parallel frontage road systems within new and existing rights of way that currently contains a four lane county highway. The complexity involved with this construction required the extensive relocation of privately owned and municipally owned utilities and coordination with adjacent property owners, including residential, commercial, and industrial owners.
HR Green was initially selected by the Village of Itasca in early 2013, through a qualification based selection (QBS) process, to provide engineering plan review and coordination assistance to the Village. With the massive quantity of engineering plans being submitted and the frequency of design coordination meetings, the Village required staff augmentation with resources that could be dedicated to meet the Tollway’s expedited review and construction process. The historical knowledge HR Green possessed through HR Green employee, Ron Krall. His involvement as Program Manager during the Phase I process with IDOT, combined with the Project Manager, Scott Marquardt’s, 15 plus years of experience as a municipally employeed engineer, were instrumental in HR Green being selected to provide these services.
As the scope of work necessary varied tremendously depending upon the Tollway schedule, the scope of services provided to the Village was initially based on workload projections for the following three months. Upon completion of the first three months of work, additional contract addendums for the succeeding six months of services were approved.
The scope of services HR Green provided soon expanded beyond the Village of Itasca to include the adjacent communities of the Village of Roselle, the City of Wood Dale, and the Village of Bensenville, as the project design continued into those communities. The communities recognized the value of utilizing the same consultant to provide similar services for them, as this greatly helped to consolidate comments between adjacent communities, which has led to improved coordination and maximized consistency of benefits to the communities.
The scope of services provided included the review of Tollway plans to maximize the benefits of municipal utility relocation, so that equal or better system capacities were provided at locations where long-term maintenance was a key factor. Public outreach to adjacent residential neighborhoods and nearby commercial and industrial properties, along with frequent presentations at Village Board and City Council meetings on project status and required municipal decisions, are key work items also included in the scope of services.
Some key wins that HR Green has been instrumental in facilitating for the communities have included the following:
- The Tollway had originally requested donations of municipally owned rights of way, but through coordination between communities and a common goal of maximizing benefits for the local agencies, the municipalities received construction credits valued at over $2.7 million for these rights of way. Each agency is using these credits to construct additional amenities, including aesthetic improvements, decorative bridge enhancements, and several miles of bike paths and sidewalks as part of the Tollway contracts.
- The Tollway had originally proposed that all frontage roads, upon completion of the project, were to be owned and maintained by local municipalities. Through a cohesive effort where Itasca, Wood Dale, and Bensenville spoke with one combined voice, the vast majority of the frontage roads, including all frontage roads in Bensenville, will now be maintained by DuPage County, saving the municipalities perpetual maintenance expense and responsibility. In addition, Itasca and Wood Dale successfully negotiated an agreement whereby DuPage County will also assume maintenance expenses for those remaining frontage road segments which in the future will be owned by a local agency.
- Over seven miles of new municipal sanitary sewer and water main systems were constructed by the Tollway at no expense to the local agencies. The location and design of these utilities were maximized through extensive coordination with local agencies and the Tollway, so these utilities were located appropriately for long-term maintenance concerns, to maximize accessibility to future redevelopment projects, and to ensure cost-effectiveness improvements.
- Intergovernmental agreements have been negotiated with each construction contract and define funding and maintenance responsibilities. These have been key in clarifying each agency’s area of responsibility, and any financial obligations from the local agencies have been tied to each respective fiscal year to ease budgeting concerns for funding of project enhancements and engineering expenses.
Scott Marquardt has been the Project Manager for this project for all four communities. As of September 2016, plan reviews have been completed on 18 separate construction contracts totaling over $512 million in construction value within the four communities.