EDWARDSVILLE — While the state’s Rebuild Illinois capital plan is extensive, it excluded several Edwardsville construction projects Mayor Hal Patton had hoped the state would fund.
Patton said he met with state Rep. Katie Stuart, D-Edwardsville, and state Sen. Rachelle Crowe, D-Glen Carbon, Oct. 15, as well as with state Sen. Jason Plummer, R-Edwardsville, to present his case for getting monies for the projects.
“There are a few different funding mechanisms — the state budget, the capital bill [that we can use]. I have been working closely with Mayor Patton and other mayors on this,” Plummer said. “Mayor Patton has been a great advocate for the city and the region.”
He said tax-funded projects like these should lead to jobs.
One project, Goshen Road Reconstruction, would be completed in two phases. Phase one would be from District Drive to Ridge View Road and the second phase would be from Ridge View to Sports Park Drive at Plummer Family Park. The scope of work would include new concrete pavement, curbs, storm sewers and a shared-use path. A portion of the first phase is shovel-ready with the remainder potentially ready by late 2019 or early 2020 if funding is secured. The total cost is just over $4 million.
The city also desires to extend Sports Park Drive north to Route 143 near Interstate 55. The scope of work would include new pavement, curbing, storm sewers and a shared-use path. The total cost is $1.5 million, and the project is shovel ready.
A related project would be to install a traffic signal where Route 143, Blackburn Road and the Sports Park Drive extension would meet. The scope of work would include a new traffic signal, roadway widening and a realignment. The total cost is $3 million, and the project is shovel-ready.
While not as apparent as the road projects but just as vital, there is a plan to add a regional sanitary sewer lift station and a gravity sewer extension to serve approximately 257 acres, including the new Anderson Hospital campus under construction across from the YMCA on Goshen Road. The total cost is $1.5 million, and the project is shovel-ready.
The most expensive project on the list would support the Town Center Development District. The city seeks to create new connecting roadways between Goshen Road and District Drive, north to south, and between Ridge View Road and District Drive, east to west, and plans include a park centered within a traffic circle. The total cost is $7 million.
“Rebuild Illinois is making a historic $45 billion investment in creating good jobs, improving the safety and dependability of roads and bridges and building major projects that are essential to Illinois’ future,” Crowe wrote in an email reply. “I participated in the Senate’s hearings held at several locations across the state to hear the needs from local leaders, and the list of projects was finalized in the most comprehensive way possible. I’m dedicated to doing all I can to advocate for more but am looking forward to seeing the slated projects under the capital plan start to begin next year.”
Patton showed the legislators a chart depicting the city’s sales tax history. Since 2013, when he took office, the rate has gone from $4.5 million to $8.3 million as of 2018.
“We realize other communities need help, but Edwardsville represents a good return-on-investment for the state and these projects mean new jobs and new revenues,” Patton said.
The $8.3 million is based on the city’s portion of the sales tax, which is 1.25 cents per dollar. The state receives five cents per dollar, which means its 2018 portion from the city was $27.7 million. 2019 data is not yet available.
“Rebuild Illinois is a massive undertaking to fix our failing infrastructure across the state,” Stuart replied via email. “I’ve had conversations with mayors from across the entire 112th District. I’m happy to see that many important projects, like the Chain of Rocks Bridge and the Route 157-162 interchange, are going forward. I will continue to advocate for the projects that will help encourage economic development in Edwardsville and across the 112th District.”