King Middle School IL Route 17 Safety Improvements


City of Kankakee

Services Provided:

Grant Writing, Surveying, Preliminary Engineering, Contract Bidding Services, Grant Administration, Construction Staking, Construction Engineering.

Construction Start:

September 2020

Construction Completion:

February 2021 (Anticipated)

Total Construction Cost:


Funding Sources:

IDOT Safe Routes to School Grant
MFT Funds
Local Capital Funds

Project Description:

For decades, the crosswalk in front of King Middle School had been an unsafe location for crossing guards and students alike. The crosswalk was unsignaled and crossed IL Route 17 with an average daily traffic count of approximately 15,800 vehicles. When the Mayor spoke to a classroom of children in 2017, urging them to find a way to make a difference in their community, one admirable student wrote to her, asking the city to make the crosswalk safer.  

The very next year in the fall of 2018, the city applied for the full amount of $200,000 to the Safe Routes to School Grant Program and were awarded the grant by Governor Pritzker in front of King Middle School in April of 2019. The City of Kankakee chose Piggush Engineering for this extraordinary community project. Our construction began in the fall of 2020 and will be completed in February 2021.

We took a holistic approach to creating a safer walkway, from altering on-street parking to creating a comprehensive light system. The proposed project includes construction of a raised concrete and landscaped median and widened crosswalk, combined with flashing yellow signal heads mounted on mast arms facing in either direction from the crosswalk.  In addition, flashing beacons will be constructed in advance of the crosswalk in both directions. To improve line of sight for pedestrians and motorists passing through the school zone, Piggush Engineering partially removed on-street parking, creating a robustly safe pedestrian walkway. Lastly, the intersections at Orchard and Taylor Street were changed to improve safety and limit turn movements through the zone. 

This undertaking encapsulates our commitment to helping our neighbors thrive. We’re honored to be the City of Kankakee’s appointed firm for this project, and inspired by the young students who envisioned a safer community and partnered with their local government to make their vision a reality. 


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