Franklin County infrastructure projects receive funding - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Franklin County infrastructure projects receive funding

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FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ill. -- Drivers in Franklin County can look forward to some road improvements in the area thanks to their share of state funds. $241 million dollars will go toward Illinois road improvement projects in 23 communities, including West Frankfort and Benton.  

The City of West Frankfort is making improvements to the Interstate 57 and Route 149 interchange in order to address safety. Mayor Tom Jordan says changes include adding additional lanes and a truck stop, to help ease traffic and boost the local economy. The city will receive $1.2 million from the state to cover engineering costs for the estimated $18 million project. 

Meanwhile, Benton will receive $2.4 million to fund engineering costs for its own infrastructure project on I-57. Benton city workers claim this will help ease congestion in the town square and improve access to the north. Plus, Mayor Fred Kondritz says the project will also boost the economy. 

"We're very aggressive about bringing in the economy and bringing in manufacturers, and a lot of different situations that the interchange will actually compliment," Kondritz said. 

Both projects still need to undergo their engineering phase, which includes addressing environmental concerns, before construction can start. The engineer phase could take up to two years.

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