City Supports Temporary Modification of Permit  allowing emergency access for trucks on Rt. 53

The City of Joliet is asking the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) to support a measure to allow emergency access of truck traffic on Route 53 for the developer of the Project, East Gate Logistics Park.

According to a letter signed by Joliet City Manager Beth Beatty, the city is asking for IDOT to modify the permit on a “temporary basis” to allow three existing buildings located in the Project, access to Route 53 for trucks to enter and leave the site. 

A lawsuit was filed against the city and East Gate Logistics Park by Houbolt Road Extension Joint Venture (HREJV), partially owned by CenterPoint Logistics. 

East Gate Logistics Park was granted permission by the city to access Millsdale Road from the south to go west to access the interstates. Future access to the Project is intended to be serviced by a permanent bridge extending west across the Union Pacific Railroad.

“The original permit was put in place to move traffic away from Rt. 53,” explained Beatty. “However, the current situation necessitates emergency access until the legal issues are resolved.”

A Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) issued on March 20th requires the city to prohibit trucks from the Project to Millsdale Road via the temporary access point. The city’s hands are legally tied now; however, the city is confident that they will prevail in the lawsuit. 

In the letter, the city states its opinion that East Gate and its tenants that are already operating, cannot be legally deprived of vehicular access. The city is therefore requesting IDOT to modify the permit until access to Millsdale Road is restored. 

“Balancing the needs of our residents and the requirement to protect the city’s interests from ongoing and future litigation presents a significant challenge for city officials,” stated Beatty. “City officials fully understand the impact this emergency permit will have on the residents in the area and are committed to a quick resolution. We are working with our state, county, and regional partners to address freight congestion in Joliet and the region for the immediate and distant future.”

Press release