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'Unmatched' Cooperation Brought Together for Red Gate Bridge

St. Charles and other local officials tout the benefits of the bridge project at the Thursday morning groundbreaking.

They say it takes a village to raise a family. For St. Charles, a combination of government resources at all levels in Illinois will come together to build the .

Officials gathered Thursday morning for the groundbreaking ceremony at the intersection of Route 31 and Red Gate Road for the $30 million project.

Mayor Don DeWitte reminded those in attendance of the “unmatched” scope of agencies brought together the long-talked-about project—state and county transportation departments, local municipalities and federal agencies.

“You start to get a picture of just how many people it takes to build a bridge,” DeWitte said.

For Kane County Board Chairwoman , who said it felt like “déjà vu” after cutting the ribbon in December for located just to the north of Red Gate's proposed site, the bridge project's lasting benefit for the community stands out.

"Together, we have a made an investment in our communities that will last beyond our lifetimes,” McConnaughay said.

Including other members of Kane County government and other , the groundbreaking also drew state Sen. , Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns and Batavia Mayor Jeff Schielke—who was thanked for help in securing $2 million in funding for the Red Gate Bridge

DeWitte also identified the benefits that proponents of Red Gate Bridge say will bring.

Fire departments and police will have another access across the river, thereby assisting public safety, DeWitte said. Transporting children from home to school across the river will be more easy.

The new bridge will alleviate congestion in downtown St. Charles and, by 2030, it will have 15,000 cars crossing a day, officials say.

If nothing else, this project will show that responsible building is possible, local governments can invest in infrastructure and that people can be put back to work, DeWitte said.

“If the private sector is unable to do it, then the public sector must,” he said.

Len Robertson August 26, 2011 at 02:03 AM
None of the neighbors cheered the Redgate bridge. In fact, the best that could be said is a thunderous silence. Those appropriate politicians can expect the same response at the next election.
Bill Page August 26, 2011 at 01:17 PM
Len: Actually, over the years tis project has been in the works, the elected officials who have supported the bridge have always enjoyed the support of the voters. Trust me, as soon as the bridge opens the small group who opposes it will quickly begin to use it....and that includes the people in Wayne who have tried to block the project for years.
Nolan Day August 26, 2011 at 02:13 PM
Bill Page has always tried to make this a Wealthy persons of Wayne resisting progress type issue. The fact is many local residents on the east and west sides just asked for the full positive benefits of nearby Stearns Rd Bridge and traffic flow improvements on Route 64 to be realized before millions of tax dollars were wasted in a terrible economy when most could use a property tax break of any amount. Where are the Conservatives and Tea Party now? The issue should have been more of a concern to St Charles' citizens than to Wayne folks about the waste of their tax dollars and routing traffic away from a less than thriving downtown area that needs revenue. The problem was not traffic count but traffic flow and simple measures like now left hand turns from Route 31 to 64 during peak hours. More left hand turn lanes on Route 64 are being worked on now. Thus the Mayor's rush to get his legacy pushed through now. St C has Council People who are followers and a Mayor who must despise our downtown merchants. Less traffic in not good for business or Geneva Commons would not have been built on Randall Rd. It would have been built out on Route 47 where land is cheaper.
Nolan Day August 26, 2011 at 04:07 PM
Mr. Mayor - What kind of dim Witte statement is that? "If the private sector is unable to do it, the public sector must". Don-Where does the public sector get the money? When was the last and what percentage of bridges in IL are built with private $. You used a dated survey including some people who will not share in the tax burden as it served your purpose. You should be ashamed of your deceptive nature but you will gloat in your victory as you seem to be that kind of egotist/bully(based on your rude treatment of those at city council meetings). $30 million on a bridge to Nowhere(it dead ends to Route 25 and further congests/endangers those that drive near North High School) while your downtown has a dozen vacant store fronts and a mall just hanging on. "People get put back to work," How many St Charles people are working on the bridge? Get to some real work Don.
kim August 26, 2011 at 04:43 PM
Officials—"who was thanked for help in securing $2 million in funding for the Red Gate Bridge". Secure it but do you really have the money from the state yet? A state that cant even pay their schools - and you think money for a bridge to nowhere is more important than our schools and safety of the kids who attend St Charles North. Glad to see you had crossing guards and traffic control for your ground breaking, but our kids cant get that before and after school. So sad. And when Mr. Mayor is questioned about the safety of the students his reply is something the the fact that "this is only a part-time job for me I dont know" Really? Stearns Road has worked out great - we dont need a bridge to nowhere. We have better things to put monies towards. Get off your ego trip and come back to reality.
D. Niel August 28, 2011 at 04:55 PM
We need the bridge to nowhere. I support the bridge.
Len Robertson August 29, 2011 at 04:08 AM
Nonsense. I was at most of those meetings over the years, and no one near the bridge wants it. That includes those west of the river as well as Wayne. As for the elected officials, none of those mentioned represent citizens near the bridge. That includes the mayor of St. Charles. For those who don't know, the Red Gate Bridge isn't being built in St Charles. As for Mr. Page, he doesn't live near the bridge, which means his opinion is worthless.
Nick Swedberg (Editor) August 29, 2011 at 01:33 PM
A comment from R. was removed because it violated our Terms of Service.
Len Robertson August 29, 2011 at 01:52 PM
Watch the law suits start when big trucks use compression braking to descend the Red Gate bridge and all their power to climb the other side and home values plummet. Even if signs are put up warning big trucks to use the Stearns Road bridge, unless there is a county cop in place to enforce the rule, the truck drivers will simply give the sign the one finger salute as they rumble past. Notice: I said county cop. What are the chances that Kane County will spend a dime to protect St. Charles folly?
Nolan Day August 29, 2011 at 03:50 PM
Well written Len. Does anyone have an Attorney in mind I could use? I have a sound consultant coming out to measure the noise(unwanted/excessive sound)prior and after. Then the Mayor can again tell me that my home will lose no value. One of the many hats he wears I guess is that of a Real Estate Appraiser.
Bad Idea August 30, 2011 at 12:41 AM
And the best thing of it all is if you are unincorporated you cant do a fricken thing. That bridge will make a race track of Red Gate road but you cant do a thing about it, you cant vote him out. The only way to hurt him will be to hurt the town, I hate to say it. The impact of the people not going to SC businesses, might make him get voted out. All these people angry with SC, what a shame.
Nick Swedberg (Editor) August 30, 2011 at 02:16 AM
@Bad Idea—Thank you for commenting but I had to remove one of your comments. It included allegations that need additional sourcing or fact checking.
D. Niel August 30, 2011 at 03:57 AM
This bridge planning began under Mayor Fred Norris during his last term. The plan was then continued under the next mayor, Sue Klinkhammer. There's a lot I don't like about the current mayor, but he is finishing the work, he didn't initiate it. You are giving him too much credit.
Nick Swedberg (Editor) August 30, 2011 at 06:29 PM
A comment was removed because it violated our Terms of Use by using inappropriate language.
Bad Idea August 31, 2011 at 03:25 AM
hey Djn, be original in what you call this. The bridge to nowhere is the prairie street bridge and the second nowhere is illinois street bridge, my god cant you think of anything else.
Bad Idea August 31, 2011 at 03:42 AM
all coments stated were from this news source. send me a question and I will email you the article you may have written or that I read on the patch. I know you need to watch what is written and keep it SOFT. I have read articles from events that you have be at and the mood of your reporting is soft to state it nice. Maybe more gentle reporting guaranties you the front seat everytime, not sure.
Bad Idea September 01, 2011 at 03:22 AM
Why have you not reported yet on the knife that was found in the Davis School second graders backpack. Don wouldnt like you anymore, no more front seat. Go Richmond Davis.
Bad Idea September 01, 2011 at 03:25 AM
Nolan, that was not Dim Witte, after all he did take classes at ECC.
Roxanne Bell September 01, 2011 at 03:56 AM
Everytime I get an update there is nothing more than " A comment was removed because it violated our Terms of Use by using inappropriate language." Why send me updates if you are just sending me the same old material??????
Nick Swedberg (Editor) September 01, 2011 at 12:43 PM
@Bad Idea—If you're interested, this story ran the day after the bridge groundbreaking: http://stcharles-il.patch.com/articles/group-not-the-right-time-for-red-gate-bridge ... I'm interested in hearing all perspectives and will report any all facets of a story. If you would like to talk about specific bridge concerns, I'm available at nicks@patch.com. Happy to hear what you have to say!
Nick Swedberg (Editor) September 01, 2011 at 12:46 PM
Could Bad Idea or anyone else who might have info about the alleged incident involving the Davis second-grader please reach out to me. nicks@patch.com or 630-666-8863. Readers like you can be a wealth of information when you contact me about potential stories.
Nick Swedberg (Editor) September 01, 2011 at 12:50 PM
@Roxanne—Yes! Doesn't it get kind of annoying? Our system works automatically so there's not much I can do about it immediately. However, I'll type up a suggestion to our department about setting up a more discriminating method for comment updates. Good idea! (BTW, I realize you're about to get more updates from me this morning after all the comments I left on this story. Apologies. :-)

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