Gas tax to pay for major road work in ChampaignPosted:
Champaign -- The I-57 overpass on Windsor Road in Champaign will close for construction Tuesday, and the changes to come will be paid for in part by the gas tax drivers pay when they fill up in town.
Once work is complete, the Windsor bridge will be wider, with added bicycle lanes and sidewalks.
The total cost of the project will be $2,557,636. About $1.7 million will be funded by with a grant from the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program. The remaining balance of $816,836 will be paid for with revenues from the Local Motor Fuel tax.
The Windsor bridge updates are the first major road project being paid for with funds from the gas tax since it went into effect in 2012. Since then, drivers pay an extra four cents at the pumps in Champaign.
Champaign mayor Don Gerard says the $1.5 million the tax brings in annually helps secure state and federal money for improvements, like those coming to the Windsor Road overpass.
"It's not a ton of money when you're talking about roads," said Gerard. "But it's always good to have a revenue stream because if there are matching grants from the state or federal government, we're much more likely to get those if we already have some existing revenue to fulfill the project."
The Windsor Road project is expected to be completed by mid-August.