Illinois drivers will soon experience the difference a Diverging Diamond Interchange can bring to problematic highway merging on the I-39 corridor.

Big Changes Coming to I-39 Corridor in Illinois

Highway driving doesn't usually bother me, but getting onto the highway or off it when you don't have much room to merge sets my nerves on edge every single time. Bad words come out of my mouth every time I try to get onto or off the bypass at the Harrison exit in Cherry Valley, but thankfully that area will soon undergo a major reconstruction project.

Over the weekend I saw the Village of Cherry Valley share this post on Facebook and thought to myself, "what the heck is that?";

Benefits Of a Diverging Diamond Interchange

If you can't read all that small print or the example photo still looks confusing, here are the major benefits that come with a Diverging Diamond Interchange according to the U.S. Department of Transportation;

  1. Increased Safety: DDIs decrease the potential for accidents by eliminating left-turn conflicts and reducing the number of traffic signals where most accidents take place.
  2. Improved Traffic Flow: DDIs improve traffic flow by reducing congestion and increasing capacity. They also usually allow drivers to move through the interchange at a higher speed.
  3. Reduced Construction Costs: DDIs are generally less expensive to construct than traditional interchanges because they require fewer bridges and less land.
  4. Pedestrian and Bike-Friendly: DDIs are also more pedestrian and bike-friendly because they provide sidewalks and bike lanes on both sides of the road.

When WIll the I-39 Corridor Reconstruction Begin?

While no official date has been stated for the beginning and/or finishing of this major reconstruction project, I can tell you that DDI's have already been installed in a few other Illinois cities like Springfield, and they have proven to be not only more cost-effective but much safer too.

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