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Evanston aldermen are scheduled tonight to approve $724,000 contract for construction engineering services for the Emerson Street, Ridge Avenue and Green Bay Road project.

The council two years ago voted to use ESI Consultants of Naperville as the engineering services contractor for all three phases of the project — which is expected to be this year’s largest single roadway construction project in the city.

The project is exepcted to cost more than $8.2 million, of which a little less than half will be covered by two federal grants.

The project is designed to reconfigure the roadway for improved traffic handling, and includes new traffic signals, street lights, water main and sewer line replacement.

It will include reconfiguring Green Bay into a three lane road with left turn lanes at cross streets and wider sidewalks as well as improving lighting under the Union Pacific viaduct.

Proposals for improved landscaping on the railroad embankment and decorative tiling on the walls underneath the viaduct have been pulled from the project because the railroad didn’t agree to those improvements. A city staff memo indicates the city hopes to win the railroad’s agreement for that work at some point in the future.

Construction plans for the project are being reviewed by the Illinois Department of Transportation and construction is expected to start late in April.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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