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Published each Thursday in Oswego, Illinois 60543
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Fear and loathing on Rt. 47 closure : Editorials : Oswego Ledger-Sentinel : Hometown Newspaper for Oswego and Montgomery, Illinois
Fear and loathing on Rt. 47 closure

To borrow an expression from the late, great "gonzo" journalist Hunter S. Thompson, we reported with much "fear and loathing" last week that the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is planning to temporarily close Ill. Route 47 to all traffic in downtown Yorkville from May 29 to June 9.

According to IDOT officials, the full closure of Route 47 is necessary to allow contractors for the railroad to rebuild a rail crossing that spans the highway just south of the bridge.

Motorists in Oswego and Montgomery may be tempted to ask, "So what?" But here's why they should be concerned: IDOT has designated Ill. Route 71, U.S. Route 34 and the Orchard Road bridge just west of Oswego as the designated detour route for Route 47 traffic. In case you don't travel west of Orchard Road much, you should know that Route 47 is one busy highway through Yorkville. According to IDOT's own traffic count figures, more than 22,000 vehicles-including hundreds of semi trucks--were traveling Route 47 daily through downtown Yorkville in 2012.

What all this means is that traffic is going to get a lot heavier on Route 71, Orchard Road and Route 34 during the first week in June. We urge motorists to be patient, plan accordingly, use alternate routes if at all possible, and expect delays-especially during the morning and evening rush hour periods.

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