News Local/State

Urbana Closing Troubled Stretch Of Windsor Road For Two Nights For Testing

A crack in the eastbound, never-driven lanes of the recently rebuilt stretch of Windsor Road in Urbana.

A crack in the eastbound, never-driven lanes of the recently rebuilt stretch of Windsor Road in Urbana. Jim Meadows / Illinois Public Media

A 1.8 mile stretch of Windsor Road along the south edge of Urbana will be closed to traffic Wednesday and Thursday night. It’s been partially closed for the last two years, due to a rebuilding project and a dispute over defects that quickly appeared in the road.

The city is bringing in a pavement testing firm to analyze the recently rebuilt section of Windsor Road, to learn more about the pavement cracks that appeared even before the rebuilding job was finished. The city has never opened the eastbound lanes of the rebuilt road, holding it as evidence while it works out a dispute with the contractor.  Once the testing is done, Assistant City Engineer Craig Shonkwiler says they hope to fully open Windsor Road, cracks and all, before winter comes.

 “We have to do a few things to make sure that we have it safe for the motoring public,” said Shonkwiler. “We have to restripe the road and then get the construction barrels off. But our intent is to work with the contractor to get that all taken place here this fall, and get the road open before snow flies.”

At issue is who will pay for fixing the problems on Windsor, the contractor or the city. Right now, the cracks are small, and you might not notice them while driving. But Urbana officials fear they could get much worse over time.

The road was originally built in the early 1990's, but was rebuilt in 2014-16 after the pavement began to decay prematurely. Shonkwiler says the cracks in the rebuilt highway are a different type of problem than the pavement decay that occurred in the earlier road.

Windsor Road in Urbana will be closed from Lincoln Avenue to Myra Ridge Drive Wednesday and Thursday night from 9 PM to 6 AM. Race Street, Philo Road and Myra Ridge Drive will remain open at Windsor Road. Portions of Boulder Drive and Vine, Scovill and Lynn Streets will be closed at their intersections with Windsor.