belt sidewalk 051221SPRINGFIELD – A measure sponsored by State Senator Christopher Belt (D-Centreville) that would require the Illinois Department of Transportation to provide funding to create additional infrastructure in urban areas passed committee on Tuesday.

The measure would require IDOT to fully fund all aspects of construction projects on state roadways, including infrastructure for pedestrians walking and bicycling within one mile of an urban area. Additionally, the measure requires IDOT to complete any of these unfinished infrastructure projects in municipalities with a population of 1,000 or more.


“Often the towns and cities that can’t afford to pay for roadside projects are the ones that need them most.” Belt said. “Transportation is about more than just cars. If the state is funding a road improvement project, it should also pay for the sidewalks and bike lanes.”


Currently, IDOT covers 100% of the roadway construction, but requires 20% of costs associated with pedestrian infrastructure projects, like sidewalks, crosswalks and bike lanes, to be funded by the municipality where the project is located, which can be a large burden for some cities – particularly lower-income communities. 

“These projects are too often left unfinished,” Belt said. “In an urban area, a large portion of the population walks or bikes, and when a sidewalk or bike lane isn’t finished, people can’t always get where they need to go safely.”

According to the Metropolitan Planning Council, the states that cover 100% of state roadway projects, including pedestrian infrastructure, include Minnesota, Wisconsin, Colorado, Massachusetts, Delaware, and New Jersey. 

House Bill 270 passed the Senate Transportation Committee with a vote of 19-0 and now heads to the Senate floor for further consideration.