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I-57 expansion in southern Illinois starts next month

A nine-mile stretch of Interstate 57 between Whittington and West Frankfort in southern Illinois will be expanded from four lanes to six lanes
Credit: Mirror-images - stock.adobe.com

BENTON, Ill. — Illinois is expanding a popular southern interstate over the next four years.

A nine-mile stretch of Interstate 57 in southern Illinois will be expanded from four lanes to six lanes. The nearly $68 million project starts next month from Whittington to West Frankfort.

It's part of a major investment from the state to rebuild I-57.

Two lanes will remain open during construction as frequently as possible, with overnight lane closures until the project wraps up in 2025.

According to a press release from Governor JB Pritzker's office, I-57 is part of the National Highway Freight Network, carrying more than 40,000 vehicles a day, 14,000 of which are trucks. The I-57 improvements are a part of Rebuild Illinois. It'll add a third lane in each direction, install a median barrier, resurface the existing lanes, update deficient guardrail and add rumble strips. 

The bridges over the Big Muddy River will also be replaced.

I-DOT says I-57 will be expanded in future years all the way to Mount Vernon.