What happens to a small town when a highway bypass is built around the community?
One Tri-State town is being used as an example.
A public meeting in Colchester concerning the 336 bypass brought both negative and positive comments, but what can be learned from it?
Four years ago, the 336 bypass around Colchester opened, people no longer had to go through that town to get to Macomb.
After seeing the impact on their community, residents are now voicing their opinions on what's happened so far, and what needs to change in the future.
Before highway 336 bypassed Colchester, over 7000 vehicles passed through the city daily.
Now, after the bypass was built only 4000 come through the city.
It's something residents say is both good and bad.
"I didn't like it at first, thought it was kind of pointless, now that it's come through, it's saved all the semi's coming through late at night when people are sleeping," said Bill Roberts.
"We have a lot of businesses and if these businesses don't survive, our little town won't be here in the near future," said Ginger Rexroat.
It's opinions from residents that Nathan Cobb, the Principal Planner for Western Illinois Regional Council says were important to hear from Monday night.
"In the meeting we can get people active about it and some ideas that somebody wouldn't say anything about they might bring up at the meeting," said Nathan Cobb.
While Cobb says much of the input was positive, residents did voice concern about two main things.
The lack of blue attraction signs that other cities have that would help lure motorists into Colchester.
And because there aren't directional signs telling trucks where to go, many are driving on roads they shouldn't be traveling on.
"A lot of trucks are using the road that lines up with Argyle road where the new Dollar General was put in and that road wasn't really made for heavy truck traffic," said Cobb.
Cobb says the information from last night's meeting will be given to I-DOT and used in future bypass projects in hopes of avoiding negative impacts to other communities.
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