JOLIET – After more than a decade of discussions, local officials gathered on July 20 to officially break ground on the Houbolt Bridge, part of the Houbolt Road extension, spanning the Des Plaines River and connecting I-80 to the Centerpoint Intermodal Center.
This bridge is estimated to support more than 20,000 trucks daily and will reduce truck traffic on local roads such as Route 53, which traverses through downtown Joliet, U.S. Route 6, and Laraway Road. It is anticipated to open Spring of 2023.
“As North America’s largest inland port, the Houbolt Road Extension is a critical piece of improving efficiency of our intermodal traffic and enhancing safety on our local roadways,” said Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant. “This bridge will cut the distance trucks travel into and out of the Centerpoint Intermodal yard which will help reduce the impact on our local roads while still contributing to our local economy.”
The new bridge will be four-mile long and is being financed through a joint venture between United Bridge Partners, Centerpoint Properties, and the City of Joliet. These entities will also own, operate, and maintain the bridge.
“We began this vision for a bridge over the Des Plaines River a long time ago, when the Centerpoint Intermodal was built,” said Mike Murphy, chief development officer for Centerpoint Propeties. “Will County is recognized for its strategic location and its strong support of the logistics industry. We sincerely appreciate the support of the county and the city in moving forward with this project which will create hundreds of jobs for local residents.”
“Without a doubt, the landscape of Will County has changed dramatically over the past two decades,” added Bertino-Tarrant. “We continue to attract national and international businesses which bring revenue to our communities and jobs for our residents. Our future is bright and the Houbolt Bridge will provide an excellent path for our continued success.”