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County implements first steps to freight mobility plan

2/21/2018, 11:43 a.m.
New system for trucks will help motorists navigate roadways.

Thetimesweekly.com

Joliet - The Will County Board shifted its Community Friendly Freight Mobility Plan into gear at its February Board Meeting with a vote to implement a new permitting system for oversized trucks that is designed to keep roads running smoothly for Will County residents.

“Maintaining quality of life for our residents is vital, especially as we balance it with the freight industry in Will County,” said Will County Board Speaker Jim Moustis (R-Frankfort). “This new Oxcart program will help us achieve that balance so that residents can continue to move safely throughout the county.”

By law, overweight and oversized trucks must obtain a permit to drive on county highways. Currently, application for these permits is still executed by fax. Oxcart Permit Systems, LLC, is a Palatine, Illinois-based company that provides an online platform to facilitate permitting and payments for oversize and overweight trucks.

“Oxcart should prove to be a more efficient service for both the county and businesses,” said Don Gould (R-Shorewood), chair of the Public Works & Transportation Committee. “Other counties and municipalities have been very satisfied with the system.”

Will County will join six Chicago area counties and the City of Chicago in streamlining the truck permitting process by using Oxcart. More than 60 local agencies use Oxcart throughout the state.

Chairman of the Illinois Tollway Board of Directors Bob Schillerstrom was on hand at the Will County Board meeting to reaffirm the Tollway’s commitment to working with Will County to address traffic congestion on I-80 in the region.

Adopting Oxcart’s online system fulfills crucial first steps in the Will County Community Friendly Freight Mobility Plan, which the board adopted last September. The plan aims to provide community friendly strategies, goals, and policies for freight development throughout Will County over the next few years.

Specifically, Oxcart will allow the County to expand data collection and improve the coordination of oversize/overweight permitting between jurisdictions, as recommended in the Freight Mobility Plan.

“It is time we updated our system,” said Don Moran (D-Romeoville). “By streamlining the permit process for overweight trucks, we will not only improve the flow of traffic in Will County, we will save time and money in the county permitting department.”

The logistics and shipping industry in Will County is only expected to grow, with the volume of freight expected to reach a value of $1.2 trillion by 2040. Careful planning will allow Will County to accommodate this growth while maintaining community safety and economic competitiveness.

The Freight Mobility Plan addresses the growth of freight shipping in the region. Developed in conjunction with the Will County Center for Economic Development (CED), the Will County Community Friendly Freight Mobility Plan makes a number of recommendations that will balance the booming shipping industry with the quality of life that residents expect.