Illinois lawmakers have passed legislation which takes steps toward the development of a new airport. If the governor signs the bill, it will direct the Illinois Department of Transportation to create a list of qualifications for proposals to build a cargo airport in Peotone. The project has been debated for around 40 years. IDOT has spent nearly $100 million acquiring land in the area over the years.
But Joliet State Senator Rachel Ventura (D-Joliet) voted against House Bill 2531 – which would bring a new freight airport to Will County. Ventura spoke out during Senate debate against the bill, citing increased cargo truck traffic along with local opposition from the Will County Farm Bureau and a majority of Will County Board members.
In response, she released the following statement:
“If this airport is built, the residents of Will County are going to face increased truck traffic on our roadways and interstate highways. This cargo airport is going to bring more freight into the region that will be transported to intermodal yards via roadways instead of using railways. Overall, the airport is a bad deal for Will County residents who are likely to see more congestion, more accidents, more pollution, and higher property taxes to pay for road repairs.”