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Expressway proposal getting mixed reviews in Bensenville
By Nadia Malik | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 4/30/2009 12:01 AM

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It comes as no surprise to many of the businesses and residents along County Line Road in Bensenville that they may be pushed aside for expressway work connected to expansion of O'Hare International Airport.

But while some residents are still willing to fight the proposal, a few business owners think it's time to negotiate.

The Illinois Department of Transportation last week announced it had narrowed proposals for a western bypass around O'Hare. One of those proposals includes a link to I-294 west of County Line Road in Bensenville.

The idea is to build an elevated expressway in the area, which would mean some property condemnation.

The other option would be an expressway link east of the Union Pacific Railroad tracks in Franklin Park.

With the news, Elk Grove Village officially dropped its objections to O'Hare expansion, leaving Bensenville alone in fighting the notion.

Russell McAbery, who owns Guardsman Laminating, Inc. on County Line, is cautiously optimistic about the idea of having to move.

So far, he's looked into getting a lawyer so he won't be unprepared if a proposal comes around.

"As long as it's reasonable, we wouldn't mind it," he said.

He said the old Bensenville administration under outgoing Village President John Geils spent much of its time fighting the proposed expansion of the airport; he hopes newly elected President Frank Soto will spend more of his energy to obtain benefits for businesses and residents.

On the street just to the west of businesses on County Line, however, residents aren't too happy about the prospect of an expressway in their backyards.

The neighborhood around John Street still showcases lawn signs opposing the expansion.

Gloria Edwards said she plans on leaving the area anyway, since it's become too expensive for her to live in Illinois.

Selling her house, though, will be a consideration that may keep her in town for a few more years.

"I know it means a larger decrease in property value and increase in pollution," she said of the expressway plan. "I imagine the noise is a major factor for the sale of a house in this area."

Cindy Stasevich, the office manager of A&A Cabinet Creations on County Line Road, said the company is relocating at the end of the month because it's just too expensive to lease in the area.

Part of that, she said, comes from a recent water surcharge from the village.

Albert Andreuccetti, who moved in just a year ago to one of the handful of houses on County Line, said he hasn't had anyone approach him yet about selling his home, but he's guessing any plans won't come around for a few years.

Until then, he'll stay in the house. But he figures something eventually will come of expansion talks. "Anytime Chicago wants something, within time, they get it," he said.