Raja Leads Bipartisan Coalition Of Community Leaders Urging Federal Agency To Authorize Continued Development Of Western Access To O’Hare
SCHAUMBURG, IL – Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi yesterday sent a letter co-signed by twenty-one community leaders urging the US Surface Transportation Board to approve the Tollways’ petition to allow continued construction of the Elgin O’Hare Western Access Project.
Rep. Krishnamoorthi began circulating the letter after his jobs summit on Tuesday which focused on the project’s huge economic benefits. The Illinois Governor’s Advisory Council estimates that approximately 65,000 permanent jobs will be created through completion of the project by 2040, in addition to other benefits such as reduced traffic congestion in communities surrounding the airport.
Congressman Krishnamoorthi’s letter follows:
April 11, 2017
The Honorable Ann D. Begeman
The Honorable Daniel R. Elliott III
The Honorable Deb Miller
United States Surface Transportation Board
395 E Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20423-0001
Re: Docket No. FD 36075
Dear Chairman Begeman and Surface Transportation Board members:
We write to express our serious concern regarding the matter referred to above, currently before the Surface Transportation Board and brought by the Illinois Toll Highway Authority (“Tollway”). In its petition, the Tollway seeks declaratory judgment that exercise of state law eminent domain authority to acquire permanent and temporary easements for the construction of five bridges over railroad tracks in the vicinity of O’Hare International Airport (“O’Hare”) is not preempted by the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act, 49 U.S.C. ss 10101 et seq.
The specific subject of the Tollway’s petition, the Western Access Interchange, is an integral component of the broader Elgin O’Hare Western Access Project (“EOWA”), and is part of the O’Hare Modernization Plan (“OMP”). The EOWA and OMP (which includes construction of a new terminal requiring a western entry point into O’Hare) are projected to greatly improve freight and passenger access to the airport by providing western access to O’Hare, and provide other transportation benefits for passenger and freight transportation in and around the Chicago area. Additionally, the Illinois Governor’s Advisory Council estimates that approximately 65,000 permanent jobs will be created by completion of EOWA by 2040, nearly seventy percent of which would locate in the communities west of O’Hare. The United States Department of Transportation recently designated EOWA as a Project of National and Regional Significance due to its impact on the regional economy and the execution of other national priorities.
Mindful of the significant economic benefits this project will bring to our communities, businesses and the region at large (and nationally, insofar as it is a continuation of improvements to an airport of critical importance to our national air transportation system), we wish to express our full support for EOWA and the Tollway’s efforts in seeing this multi-year project completed as soon as resolution of this issue, and construction of the roadway, permits.
Member of Congress
I, the undersigned, concur with the concerns state in Congressman Krishnamoorthi’s letter of April 11, 2017 to the Surface Transportation Board, and support the Illinois Toll Highway Authority’s efforts to obtain the easements necessary to complete the Elgin O’Hare Western Access Project.
DuPage County Board Chairman
Timothy O. Schneider
Cook County Commissioner
Evan K. Summers
Village Manager -Bensenville
Craig B. Johnson
Mayor of Elk Grove Village
Rodney S. Craig
Mayor, Village of Hanover Park
Village President, Schaumburg
Mayor of the City of Wood Dale
State Representative for the 43rd District
State Representative for the 56th District
Laura M. Murphy
State Senator for the 28th District
Chairman, O’Hare Noise Committee
Member, DuPage County Board
County Board, DuPage County District 1
James P. Connolly
Chicago Laborers’ District Council Business Manager
BA Carpenters Union 181
Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters
President, Chicago and Cook County Building Trades
Business Manager, IBEW Local 701
President, Illinois Road and Transportation Builders Association
John A. Carpenter
President & CEO, Choose DuPage
President, Meet Chicago Northwest