Illiana Expressway Hits New Roadblock

Jun 18, 2015

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner suspended construction on the expressway in February.
Credit Kyle May /

A Chicago federal judge has halted plans for the proposed Illiana Expressway. He blocked construction on the highway that would link northwest Indiana with suburban Chicago, citing a misleading environmental impact statement from the Federal Highway Administration. The study’s population projections depended on the assumption the highway would be built.

New Illinois governor Bruce Rauner paused highway construction in February to reduce his state’s budget deficit. Chicago preservation group Openlands hopes the new court ruling will end Illiana construction for good. Spokeswoman Stacy Meyers says there are too few benefits and the environment would be trampled.

"The amount of traffic that would take the Illiana, even by [the Illinois Department of Transportation]’s projections, is pathetic," Meyers says. I don’t think it addresses the problems that we really need to address."

The Indiana Department of Transportation declined commenting on the road’s future.