INFRASTRUCTURE UPDATE: Expressway litter removal weeks of June 26, July 3

The Illinois Department of Transportation announced yesterday that as part of ongoing efforts to keep roadsides, interchanges, ramps and shoulders clean of trash and debris, litter removal operations are scheduled to take place along the expressway system in Cook and the collar counties. 

The following schedule is for daytime litter removal to take place intermittently during the weeks of June 26 and July 3. The locations are weather permitting and subject to change: 

Interstate 290 (Eisenhower Expressway) Wells Street to Lake Cook Road, including Army Trail extension
Interstate 55 (Stevenson Expressway) DuSable Lake Shore Drive (U.S. 41) to U.S. 30
Interstate 80 Interstate 294 to Kendall County Line
Kennedy Expressway (Interstate 90/94) Mannheim Road (U.S. 12) to Ida B. Wells Drive
Edens Expressway (Interstate 94) Kennedy junction to Clavey Road
Bishop Ford Expressway (Interstate 94) Cottage Grove to I-80
Dan Ryan Expressway (Interstate 90/94) Ida B. Wells to Interstate 57
Interstate 57 Dan Ryan to I-80 

Although lane closures will not be required, equipment and workers may be present on the shoulders. Motorists are asked to remain alert, slow down, move over and give maintenance teams space to work – it’s the law. 

Similar operations will be taking place on a rotating basis across the region as weather permits and announced in advance. 

In addition to dispatching its regular maintenance employees to pick up litter, IDOT has hired private firms to help with the frequency of trash removal and shoulder sweeping operations, while also filling gaps in coverage areas. Priority consideration is given to smaller companies seeking opportunities to participate on state projects and programs through the state’s Small Business Initiative. 

While IDOT is committed to maintaining a positive impression of the state by keeping roadsides clean, the public can play a part as well. Remember: Think Before You Throw! Littering is a problem that’s easily controlled and preventable. Use a trash can instead. 

Litter is more than just an eyesore – it has real, negative impacts on the environment and communities, while unnecessarily costing taxpayers millions of dollars a year. In 2022, IDOT spent approximately $26.5 million statewide on picking up litter, sweeping shoulders and removing large debris. That’s the equivalent of buying 143 maintenance trucks that also plow snow in winter or purchasing all of the salt IDOT spread during the past snow-and-ice season, with $1 million left to spare. It also could pay to resurface 13 miles of interstate.