UNIVERSITY PARK (WREX) — A law signed Thursday will allow the Illinois Department of Transportation to build a third Chicago-area airport.
The South Suburban Airport will be located in Will County and is expected to employ 11,000 construction workers during the building process and 14,000 people once it is operational.
Senate Bill 20 allows IDOT to enter a public-private partnership to develop, finance, build, manage, operate, and maintain the new airport. The agency must work with all local government and private entities impacted by the airport.
So far, the state has invested approximately $40 million on land acquisition and the remaining $71 million needed is included in the Fiscal Year 2014 budget. The site consists of about 5,800 acres and the facility could eventually take up 20,000 acres including access roads and lands allowing for noise abatement.
IDOT's Airport Master Plan for the South Suburban Airport is currently being reviewed by the Federal Aviation Administration and approval is expected within the next few months.