Illinois Route 59
|Maintained by IDOT|
|Length:||71.13 mi (114.47 km)|
|Existed:||1924 – present|
|South end:||I-55 in Shorewood|
| US 52 in Shorewood
US 30 in Plainfield
US 34 in Aurora
I-88 / IL 110 in Naperville
US 20 in Bartlett
I-90 in Hoffman Estates
US 14 in Barrington
US 12 in Wauconda
US 12 in Fox Lake
|North end:||IL 173 in Antioch|
|Counties:||Will, DuPage, Cook, Lake|
Illinois Route 59 is a north–south state highway in northeastern Illinois. It runs south from Illinois Route 173 in Antioch to I-55 in Shorewood, spanning the north–south width of Chicago's western suburbs. This is a distance of 71.13 miles (114.47 km).
Illinois 59 is a major four-lane arterial for most of its length, running parallel to and about five miles (8 km) east of the Fox River in Illinois. It is especially congested in the suburbs of Aurora and Naperville, where traffic counts average 40,000-55,000 vehicles per day; portions of this route are already six lanes, while the remaining portions are in the process of being widened to six lanes. In Plainfield and in the corridor from Warrenville to Hoffman Estates, the road is also fairly congested, with traffic counts averaging 25,000-40,000 vehicles per day; these portions are four lanes wide. Most portions along Illinois 59 are zoned for commercial uses, however there are extensive stretches of residential areas along the road in West Chicago, Barrington, and Fox Lake Hills. Illinois 59 is the only numbered highway with a Metra station named after it: the Route 59 station on the BNSF line, which differentiates the station from the Naperville and Aurora stations.
Illinois 59 is called Fox Lake Road in Fox Lake Hills, Grand Avenue in portions of Ingleside and eastern Fox Lake, Sutton Road from South Barrington to Bartlett, Neltnor Boulevard in West Chicago, Hough Street in Barrington, and Brook Forest Avenue and Cottage Street in Shorewood.
SBI Route 59 ran from Joliet to Antioch on the current Illinois 59. Illinois 59 was replaced by U.S. Route 66 as U.S. 66 made its way onto a new highway in 1940; by 1957, Illinois 59 had been returned to its original state.
The Fox Valley Freeway was a limited-access highway that was proposed in the 1960s as a bypass to Chicago. The highway would have joined with Interstate 55 near Plainfield, Illinois, continuing northwest and north along and west of the Fox River Valley (hence the name).
Like many proposed highways, this one brought a lot of opposition. In 1969, a group of concerned citizens from the Barrington area formed the Defenders of the Fox in response to the proposed Fox Valley Freeway. The group's mission was to protect and improve the environment in the ecosystem of the Fox River, its tributaries and watershed, and its first goal was to fight the freeway.
The idea of a western loop around the Chicago suburbs never totally died. In the 1990s, there were still a few legislators that pressed for more study of the Fox Valley Freeway as cities continue growing in the region.
Retail and Commerce
In almost every town or village spanning Route 59, retail development and residential sprawl can be found. The Route 59 corridor includes regional shopping areas in the Naperville/Aurora area, the Hoffman Estates/South Barrington/Streamwood area, the Plainfield area, and the Joliet/Shorewood area. The Route 59 corridor also includes large community retail areas in Volo/Fox Lake, Wauconda, Bartlett, West Chicago, and Warrenville. Route 59 also travels through the Barrington Historic District and is proximate to significant office complexes and job centers at its junctions with Interstate 90 and Interstate 88; these intersecting corridors of commerce are known as the Golden Corridor and the Illinois Technology and Research Corridor respectively. The regional shopping malls Westfield Fox Valley in Aurora, Poplar Creek Crossing in Hoffman Estates, and The Arboretum of South Barrington can all be found along the Route 59 corridor.
|Will||Shorewood||I-55 (Will Rogers Highway) – Normal, Bloomington, St. Louis||Southern terminus of IL 59|
|US 52 (Jefferson Street)|
|Plainfield||US 30 east / Lincoln Highway east (Joliet Road)||Southern end of US 30/Lincoln Highway concurrency|
|IL 126 (Will Rogers Highway, Main Street)|
|US 30 west / Lincoln Highway west (143rd Street)||Northern end of US 30/Lincoln Highway concurrency|
|DuPage||Aurora||US 34 (Ogden Avenue)|
|Naperville||I-88 / IL 110 (Ronald Reagan Memorial Tollway) – Aurora, Chicago|
|Warrenville||IL 56 (Butterfield Road)|
|West Chicago||IL 38 (Roosevelt Road)|
|IL 64 (North Avenue)||Red light camera enforcement intersection (southbound only)|
|Cook||Bartlett||US 20 (Lake Street) – Elgin, Chicago|
|Streamwood||IL 19 (Irving Park Road)|
|Hoffman Estates||IL 58 (Golf Road)|
|I-90 (Jane Addams Memorial Tollway) – Elgin, Chicago|
|South Barrington||IL 72 (Higgins Road)|
|Barrington Hills||IL 62 / IL 68 west (Algonquin Road)||Southern end of IL 68 concurrency|
|Barrington||IL 68 east (Dundee Road)||Northern end of IL 68 concurrency|
|Lake||US 14 (Northwest Highway)|
|North Barrington||IL 22|
|Wauconda||US 12 east (Rand Road) – Des Plaines||Southern end of US 12 concurrency|
|IL 176 (Liberty Street, Wauconda Road)|
|Volo||IL 120 (Belvidere Road)|
|Fox Lake||IL 134 east (Big Hollow Road)||Western terminus of IL 134|
|US 12 west||Northern end of US 12 concurrency|
|Fox Lake Hills||IL 132 east (Grand Avenue)||Western terminus of IL 132|
|Antioch||IL 173||Northern terminus of IL 59|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
- Carlson, Rick. Illinois State Highways Page: Routes 41 through 60. Last updated March 15, 2006. Retrieved March 23, 2006.
- Illinois Technology Transfer Center (2006). "T2 GIS Data". Retrieved 2007-11-08.
- Metra. Metra Home Page. Retrieved May 2, 2006.
- Caton Farm - Bruce Road Phase I Study
- Environmental Defenders of McHenry County
- Illinois Periodicals Online