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Bucktown's Damen-Elston-Fullerton Intersection Just Got Less Clusterf*cky

By Stephen Gossett in News on Dec 20, 2016 5:36PM

One of the most hair-pullingly traffic-clogged intersections in the city just got a little better on Tuesday.

Local officials unveiled the opening of a new realigned stretch of Elston Avenue at the notorious, formerly six-way intersection of Elston, Damen and Fullerton, in Bucktown, which should help alleviate congestion as the project now pauses for winter.

Construction at the intersection has been patience-trying for motorists and cyclists alike ever since it began last May, but a revamp was undoubtedly in order. As we noted when the project began, wait times could stretch as high as seven minutes at the intersection—which had also been ranked among the most dangerous for collisions.

Now, the new readjusted Elston allows for distinct intersections at both Fullerton and Elston, and Damen and Elston. Both directions on the realigned Elston portion—now fully opened—have two traffic lanes and protected bike lanes.

“Damen, Elston, and Fullerton used to be one of Chicago's most dangerous and most congested intersections, one that drivers would try to avoid at all costs,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a press release. “Now with the fully opened, new intersection at Elston and Fullerton, traffic is flowing more smoothly and drivers can actually get through on a single traffic light.”

The $22.5 million project will resume next spring, when the newly constructed Elston Court will be extended from Fullerton to the new stretch of Elston.

See the City of Chicago's rendering below for reference.

City of Chicago