Olympian construction to begin Monday
URBANA — Construction of the controversial Olympian Drive project, north of Urbana, is expected to begin Monday.
Feutz Contractors Inc. of Paris was awarded the construction contract by the Illinois Department of Transportation with a bid of $7,092,062. Three other bids, ranging from $7.19 million to $7.42 million, were received for the project, according to IDOT.
Earlier this year, Champaign County Engineer Jeff Blue said the project had an estimated cost of about $9 million.
No county or city funds are going toward the project that eventually will provide direct access to Intestate 57 from North Lincoln Avenue in Urbana by way of Olympian. The project also calls for construction of a bridge over the Canadian National Railroad tracks.
The entire project is being funded by the Illinois Jobs Now public works program, the Federal Highway Administration and the Illinois Commerce Commission Grade Crossing Protection Fund.
The work is expected to take two years to complete. An official groundbreaking is tentatively scheduled for mid-August.
North Lincoln Avenue is expected to be closed during part of the construction, probably beginning in October, local public works officials said. It will remain closed through next summer until a new pavement and intersection of Olympian Drive and North Lincoln Avenue is completed.
The Olympian project had been opposed by landowners in the area north of Urbana, and by others who said that it was unneeded, costly and would contribute to urban sprawl.