CHICAGO (CBS) — A Northwest Side alderman is calling it the Meigs Field of the 45th ward, but this story of crews digging up asphalt without notifying the public may have a different ending, reports WBBM’s Nancy Harty.
This morning, Alderman John Arena stopped a construction crew from doing any more digging on a popular side street slated for permanent closure.READ MORE: Yasmin Perez Has Died, Days After Gruesome Humboldt Park Shooting That Also Killed Her Boyfriend, Gyovanni Arzuaga
After an afternoon meeting with representatives of the transportation department and the mayor’s office, Arena says crews will backfill the hole on Lamon and Wilson so the road is open for driving.
Arena says last week, he started getting calls from residents very upset about the transportation department blocking off and digging up the popular short cut – the first he had heard about a project that he estimates has been in the works for about eight months.READ MORE: Free Lollapalooza Tickets For People Getting COVID Shots This Saturday
He says the real reason for the closure is to make way for an electronic billboard that the city council approved two years ago over his objections.
In the next couple of days, Arena says the city will explore other locations for the billboard and study how traffic will be impacted by the closure – including ways to mitigate the impact.MORE NEWS: 'We Walk For Her' Brings Attention To Murdered Black Women And Girls
A CDOT spokesman says the change is to enhance safety concerns about speeding and vehicles hitting the guard rail or viaduct.