BOURBONNAIS — Village trustees approved a resolution during this week’s regular board meeting to apply for state funds to help build a pedestrian bridge at a busy intersection near Olivet Nazarene University.
The proposed $6.3 million project would have the bridge cross over the south side of the intersection of Illinois Route 102 and U.S. Route 45/52 by Olivet’s campus.
Following a public hearing on the project prior to Monday’s regular meeting, village engineer Dave Tyson said the village is applying for $2 million from the Illinois Department of Transportation’s program for transportation enhancement (ITEP).
Funds can be used for bike/pedestrian facilities and abandoned railroad corridors converted to trails.
“One thing that helps is the project is fully designed,” Tyson said. “IDOT has been involved.”
Olivet would help pay for construction of the bridge. The village would look for donations and money from its general fund to pay for the remainder.
In January 2018, the village approved a $165,000 contract with BLDD Architects Inc. to create designs for the bridge. Olivet paid for half of the contract.
The bridge would be covered and allow for pedestrian and bicycle traffic. Elevators would transport users from street level to the bridge deck.
Olivet uses off-campus apartments to house some students. Those units are located northwest of the intersection.
Mayor Paul Schore said it is a safety issue they are addressing in a high-traffic area.
In another ITEP grant application trustees approved, the village is applying for $625,000 to build a multi-use bike path to run north from Bethel Drive east of Noel LeVasseur School easement to Burns Road near Liberty Intermediate School.
The 1-mile portion is part of a proposed 2.15-mile path to Bourbonnais Township Park District’s Diamond Point Park.
Tyson said most of the land for the 10-foot wide paved path has been secured.
There are no bike trails or shoulders on major thoroughfares such as Career Center Road and U.S. Route 45/52 in the area of the proposed path.