Traffic Question 13: Design of the John Deere Express / Milan Beltway exchange


Traffic Question 13:

The John Deere Express / Milan Beltway exchange. Which of these is the better road layout and design?


IDOT's Answer:

It is easily apparent that the top diagram is much simpler. Let’s remove some of the distracting parts of the diagram to illustrate this.

Moline/Milan have no stops. Moline/Rock Island and Milan/Rock Island both have opportunities to stop and enjoy the scenery.

Let’s build a ROAD! Quack, quack. (You may be familiar with Word World’s “Let’s build a word.”)

Conventional Answer

Are you nuts? Who wants to sit at extra stop lights and stop signs, and make extra turns and merges? The only way the top diagram makes sense is if Milan is trying to get people to come to Milan (by mistake).

The lower diagram has zero stop signs, zero stop lights for any direction. No bizarre pathing, except perhaps a minor loop for Milan to Rock Island.

Additional Information:

Apparently, the main reasons for a new connection was 1) need for expansion and 2) Blackhawk State Park is a historical area with embankments that prevent widening of the existing road. IDOT still have the report available (directory,  first section of report. road plan for future development).