A Three-Lane Quentin Road will Fit Within the Existing Right-of-Way PDF Print E-mail
stakeholder workgroups - WG4: Deer Grove Forest Preserve
Written by Administrator   

One controversial aspect of the current Cook County Highway Department (CCHD) plans for a Quentin Road rebuild is the fact, that valuable Forest Preserve Land with old trees needs to be converted into a freeway. But CCHD already has a significant right of way (ROW) along Quentin Road - much more than the current road width, but not enough for the current five lane freeway plan.


The cross-section width of Quentin Road will depend not only on the number of lanes, but also on the type of drainage system used for the road. Let’s look at the two drainage system alternatives to see how much right-of-way (ROW) would be  required under each system relative to the existing ROW:

Closed System:

A “closed” system consists of a curb and gutter to collect rainwater and move it into storm drains.

The CCHD is proposing a 70-foot cross-section in stretches of the road where there would be four 12-foot lanes of traffic and a 4-foot median. This means that in addition to the four lanes plus median there is a need for 18 feet of extra cross-section for a closed system. A three-lane road would thus require a cross-section of only 54 feet – 36 feet for three lanes plus the extra 18 feet beyond the actual lanes. This is 12 feet narrower than the existing 66-foot cross-section!

Open System:

An “open” system consists of a shoulder and ditch (as with the current road), which allows water to infiltrate into the ground near where it falls.

The CCHD’s 4(f) report for Quentin Road says that an open system would require an additional 12 feet over and above that required for a closed drainage system. Adding 12 feet to the cross-section of 54 feet for the closed system gives us 66 feet as the required ROW for a three-lane road with an open drainage system.

Bottom line:

A three-lane road fits within the existing CCHD ROW with either an open or closed drainage system. The Cook County Forest Preserve would not need to lose any valuable trees and land to build a three-lane road.

Last Updated on Sunday, 07 March 2010 23:53