Illinois-Indiana interstate plan clears hurdle

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The Metropolitan Planning Organization voted 11 to 8 vote in favor of the controversial Illiana toll road project today.

The 47-mile corridor in Will County would connect interstates 55 and 57 in Will County and I-65 near Lowell, Ind.

After the vote, Gov Quinn issued a statement, saying in part, “Today marks a major victory for economic development and jobs in the Southland, which will strengthen Illinois’ economy and pave the way for future growth.”

Republican Senator Mark Kirk made reference to the Illiana’s planned use of public and private money saying, “Today’s vote shows there is value in pursuing partnerships like the Illiana Expressway to tap private markets for public investment.”

Supporters say 9,000 short-term jobs would be created building the new toll road and another 28,000 over the long haul.”

Opponents say those numbers have been pumped-up and that taxpayers will end up paying for the road, the jobs and more.

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