Friday, June 13, 2014


This weekend’s near-shutdown along the inbound Kennedy Expressway begins Friday night, when drivers, downtown business owners and summer event organizers will start to see whether a feared “carmageddon’’ takes hold.
At 10 p.m., and extending until 5 a.m. Monday, the inbound stretch of the Kennedy (I-90/94) will be reduced to two 15 mph lanes instead of five regular lanes (or seven lanes if counting the reversible express lanes), from roughly 1 mile before Ohio Street until the Hubbard’s Cave tunnel, where traffic will be allowed to merge back onto the Kennedy, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation.
The intentionally induced bottleneck and detour on a highway that handles 260,000 vehicles on an average day are necessary to safely demolish the three sections of the 55-year-old westbound Ontario Street bridge over the eastbound Kennedy, according to IDOT. The work will be done over three consecutive weekends and drivers will be transferred as early as Monday to a new Ontario feeder ramp bridge that is nearing completion, IDOT said.
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