Drivers will notice a significant change near the Jane Byrne Interchange beginning this weekend, as the ramp from outbound Ida B. Wells Drive to the outbound Kennedy Expressway has closed.
The Illinois Department of Transportation officially closed the ramp on Saturday morning, according to department officials. The closure will remain in effect until at least the end of 2020 as crews will tear down and rebuild the ramp, according to officials.
The newly designed ramp is expected to improve safety by “relocating several left-hand entrance ramps and reducing conflict points through a heavily congested area,” IDOT said in a statement.
Motorists are advised to allow extra time if they are traveling through the area, as detours are in place because of the closure. Detours will direct Ida B. Wells Drive traffic north to Dearborn Street, west to Van Buren Street, north to Jefferson, and east to the Adams Street ramp.
The ramp closure is just the first of several big closures expected as part of the Jane Byrne Interchange project during 2020. The inbound Eisenhower ramp to the outbound Kennedy will be closed and demolished as part of the project, and reconstruction of the ramp from outbound Ida B. Wells Drive to the Dan Ryan Expressway will also continue.
The Adams Street and Jackson Boulevard overpasses over the Kennedy Expressway will also close this spring for reconstruction.