Officials Gather for Houbolt Road Extension’s Groundbreaking Ceremony in
OAK BROOK, IL – On Tuesday, July 20, 2021, government and corporate officials gathered a
short walk from the Des Plaines River for a groundbreaking ceremony for the Houbolt Road
Extension Project, a public-private partnership bringing a host of infrastructure improvements to
the City of Joliet, IL.
The privately financed project by Houbolt Road Extension JV, LLC, a joint venture
between United Bridge Partners and CenterPoint Properties, involves constructing a new 1.5-
mile-long highway extension – including a 0.4-mile bridge over the Des Plaines River – to
connect Interstate 80 with the CenterPoint Intermodal Center and its Union Pacific and
Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway intermodal facilities. The HRE-JV will also operate and
maintain the bridge while collecting bridge tolls under a 99-year lease agreement with the City of
In addition to the four-lane Houbolt Road extension and bridge, the project will deliver the
- Turning and merging lanes from Houbolt Road to Schweitzer Road and US Route 6.
- A signalized intersection at Vetter and Schweitzer Roads.
- Grading for a dedicated pedestrian/bicycle path parallel to the new roadway on Houbolt
As many as 20,000 trucks pass through the CenterPoint Intermodal Center daily. Project
leaders say constructing the third entrance to the park will significantly reduce truck traffic on
local roads and significantly slash the CIC’s carbon footprint.
“With the growth of the Union Pacific intermodal, the BNSF intermodal and the business park, a
need for a new means of ingress and egress to this park was vital,” said Michael Murphy,
CenterPoint Properties’ chief development officer.
“United Bridge Partners intends to be part of this community for a very, very long time. We’re
thrilled to be here and serve you and support you,” said Doug Witt, president and chief
executive officer of United Bridge Partners.
The publicly funded portion of the project will consist of a $32 million investment by the State of
Illinois and the City of Joliet to construct a new diverging diamond interchange at I-80 and
Houbolt Road and reconstruct Houbolt Road from I-80 to US Route 6.
Murphy highlighted the “full team effort” of the many public and private organizations and union
partners working on the project, particularly the International Union of Operating Engineers
Local 150, a project investor with United Bridge Partners and CenterPoint. He also credited
Joliet Mayor Bob O’Dekirk for having the “vision” to help get the project off the ground many
years after its idea was hatched.
“It’s a great step forward. I think the biggest step that’s been taken by anybody since the
intermodals came to our area,” said O’Dekirk, who also thanked Elwood Mayor Doug Jenco and
Channahon Mayor Missey Moorman Schumacher in attendance. “What we’re doing here in
Joliet is going to have a regional effect. It’s important that Joliet and other cities in Will County
all partner together,” O’Dekirk added.
“We have become the playbook for the entire state of Illinois. When things are getting done,
they look to us here in Will County,” said Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.
Illinois Department of Transportation Region 1 Engineer Jose Rios said revamping the I-80
interchange for the Houbolt Road Extension Project is one of a multitude of infrastructure
improvements in Governor JB Pritzker’s $33.2 billion Rebuild Illinois plan to upgrade
infrastructure across all modes of transportation in the state.
“This is an exciting time for the region because the Houbolt Bridge Project will coincide with the
Governor’s vision to reconstruct I-80, a key travel and freight corridor for the entire country,”
Construction on the project kicked off in March and is on track to be completed in Spring 2023.
For more information and project updates, visit www.houboltroadextension.com.
(Pictured above from L-R: United Bridge Partners’ President and CEO Doug Witt, Will County Executive Jennifer
Bertino-Tarrant, CenterPoint Properties’ Chief Development Officer Michael Murphy, Joliet Mayor Bob O’Dekirk, and
Illinois Department of Transportation Region 1 Engineer Jose Rios)
About United Bridge Partners:
United Bridge Partners is a pure-play private bridge finance, construction, operations, and maintenance
company in the United States. The Company believes in investing in the communities in which they
operate through job creation with local labor and local materials, contributions to local charities and
businesses, and building and operating their projects with the highest environmental standards. For more
information, visit www.unitedbridgepartners.com.