3.6.06

HIDDEN SUBSIDIES. The City of DeKalb sets up temporary weighing stations on the main drag and ... the trucks stay away.

Portable truck scales placed around town last month helped police nab only one overweight truck, according to Police Chief Bill Feithen.

But the better news might be that officers saw a “noticeable drop in truck traffic” in the areas the scales were used, Feithen said - including, perhaps most significantly, the downtown.Supporters of revitalizing the downtown have long said that efforts to make the area more popular among shoppers are hurt by the estimated 800 trucks that travel through the area each day. The city's downtown lies along Lincoln Highway, which as state Route 38 is open to trucks.

The new tolls, including time- and weight-sensitive tolls for truckers, do divert some traffic through town.
The city has a dedicated truck route at the south end of the city that is designed to direct semi-trailers away from the more populated areas and onto the Interstate 88 tollway. But for truckers heading to and from Rochelle, state routes 38 and 23 can be less-expensive, if slower, alternatives to I-88.
Keep this story in mind the next time a trucker gripes about Metra working with the railroads to provide additional trackage in the Chicago area.

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