2011 to be biggest Illinois road-building year

Illinois plans $5 billion in road work in the next fiscal year.

Transportation Secretary Gary Hannig on Thursday said that will be a record amount.

Gov. Pat Quinn announced a six-year, $12.8 billion highway improvement program starting July 1.

That includes $2.5 billion in the first year.

Combined with existing work, it will be a record construction year.

The five-year total also includes more than $2.5 billion in state funds that will be borrowed from the capital construction plans the Legislature adopted last year.

The plan will rehabilitate 4,739 miles of highways and replace or fix 763 bridges.

Work on a new bridge across the Mississippi River at East St. Louis will begin this year.