Chicago environmental groups filed a lawsuit Thursday to stop the proposed $1.3 billion Illiana Expressway. The suit claims the Illinois Department of Transportation doesn't have authority to develop it. The expressway would be operated as a toll road.
The Environmental Law & Policy Center filed the suit in Cook County Circuit Court on behalf of the Sierra Club and Openlands. It contends that the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's policy committee erred when it voted in October to include the tollway in its long-term development plan for the region, even though its own board of directors had already derided it as an expensive boondoggle and voted against it.
The lawsuit claims board approval is necessary under Illinois law, and IDOT cannot legally circumvent that.