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Madison Street Streetscape

October 4th, 2016

Villages of Forest Park and River Forest

There is always something brewing on Madison Street in the heart of Forest Park and River Forest. The countless bars, restaurants, coffee shops and boutique stores on Madison Street provide the perfect setting for the renowned Saint Patrick’s Day Parade, Cruise Night, Wine Walk & Shop, Casket Races, Forest Park Music Fest, and Holiday Walk.

For the past two years, Madison Street has also been home to both a streetscape and resurfacing project. The long-awaited projects were a vision shared by Forest Park Mayor Anthony Calderone and River Forest President Cathy Adduci. These improvements were made possible by obtaining Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP) and Surface Transportation Program (STP) Grant funding. Village Administrators Timothy Gillian and Eric Palm were instrumental in developing the projects as they spearheaded multiple public meetings and coordination efforts with local businesses.


The streetscape project took place between Desplaines Avenue and Park Avenue in both Villages. This section implemented intersection bump outs and landscaped medians that complemented the existing streetscape east of Desplaines Avenue. A focal point of the streetscape included a brick paver ribbon behind the curb, inside of bump outs, and along the perimeter of the raised pre-cast curb medians. New decorative light poles were installed to provide roadway and pedestrian lighting and add more aesthetic interest to the roadway. Other features included planter boxes and planter medians with a variety of perennials and shrubs, pedestrian benches, and trash receptacles.

The resurfacing project between Harlem Avenue and Desplaines Avenue extended the streetscape improvements by updating the pavement condition, modernizing the intersections to meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements and enhancing the landscaping by replacing the planter pots. Both Madison Street projects included new decorative stop signs and pavement textured crosswalks to aesthetically tie these two projects together.

dsc_0203_smallCBBEL provided design and construction engineering services for both of these federally funded projects. Community relations were a crucial component of both the design and construction engineering processes, but especially the construction process. It was important to both Villages, and to CBBEL, to keep local businesses up to date about the construction process. Access was maintained to every business entrance and driveway during the construction operation. When businesses hosted special events during both projects, construction operations were modified, delayed or postponed to accommodate these events.

“The Village of River Forest was pleased to partner with the Village of Forest Park and CBBEL on the Madison Street Streetscape Project. It’s a great example on how local governments work together in a way that mutually benefits both communities.” Eric Palm, Village of River Forest

James F. Amelio, PE
Project Manager

Tracy Wais, PE
Construction Engineer