On the way back from the Rockford hearing for former McHenry County Sheriff’s Deputy Greg Pyle I decided to see if the new Huntley entrance from the West was open.
With all the construction, on that part of the Northwest Tollway, I was not about to pay to drive no faster than I could on Route 20, so I took it to Marengo.
Then, I detoured south on Route 23 to get pictures of the intersection that Marengo wants to turn into a cash cow once it gets Tollway access.
It was the first time I had been in that part of Riley Township south of the Tollway short of driving on Route 23.
I saw Coon Creek and got some photos of the overpass.
Then I took Harmony Road back to Route 20 and drove onto the Tollway the way that House Speaker Mike Madigan drives home from his Lake Geneva home.
The first sign of the new entrance indicated it was four miles away.
The second said, “Huntley, Woodstock 2 Miles.”
Then there was a sign saying a “Crash Investigation Site” was a half-mile on up.
Getting closer, a sign said, “I-PASS ONLY, CASH NOT ACCEPTED, Illinois 47, Huntley Woodstock, 1 MILE.”
A half a mile away was the same sign saying the exit was coming up in “1/2 MILE.”
“Factory Shops Blvd. NEXT RIGHT” said the sign as the Tollway starred to curve to reach the exit.
Just beyond it was one saying, “ILLINOIS ROUTE 47 INTERCHANGE, OPENING SOON, ALL ELECTRONIC, FULL ACCESS INTERCHANGE.”
Then there was a sign which read, “PAY TOLL THIS EXIT, I-PASS ONLY, CASH NOT ACCEPTED.”
And there was the exit lane with a sign next to it saying, “RANDALL ROAD 6 MILES.”
The exit sign above the road announced this was “EXIT 46″ at Route 47, repeating that no cash would be accepted, that only electronic payment though I-PASS was acceptable.
But I couldn’t get off the highway. It was blocked.
The official opening ceremony was scheduled for 1 PM.
As I drove off toward the Randall Road exit six miles away, I saw a “RAMP CLOSED” sign on a barricade.
And it only cost was an 88% increase in tolls, which no public official in McHenry County publicly opposed.