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Wicker Park, Bucktown, West Town

Bucktown Drivers, Be Alert: You Now Have To Drive On The Other Side Of Armitage During Construction

The street is still open for eastbound traffic between Western Avenue and the expressway. The water main replacement is expected to be completed by late fall.

The intersection of Armitage and Western avenues in Bucktown on Sept. 22, 2021
Quinn Myers/Block Club Chicago
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BUCKTOWN — Drivers heading east on Armitage Avenue in Bucktown now will have to drive on the north side of the street, as construction continues on a new water main. 

The traffic pattern was flipped Wednesday morning from the south side of the street along Armitage from Western Avenue to the Kennedy Expressway. 

Repaving and other improvements will likely be completed in late spring 2022. 

The westbound lane remains closed for the remainder of the project, which is expected to wrap in late November.

“They’ll open the whole thing up [then], but it would just be a very rough street for the winter,” said Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd). 

The new water main was needed after a series of breaks and ongoing wear and tear in recent years, Waguespack said. 

“There’s been a lot of construction there over the several few years, and we saw more and more water main breaks. The original pipe was around 100 years old,” he said. “Between the increased traffic and the new construction over there…every time you put in so many connections you really get to the point where it’s degraded so much you have to do a new one.” 

Waguespack says the scene was somewhat chaotic Wednesday morning as drivers adjusted to the new traffic pattern. He plans to have his office put up additional signs, especially near the McDonald’s on Western Avenue. 

“The biggest problem is we’ve got people coming out of McDonald’s that deliberately go the wrong way or don’t read the signs so they’re going head on into traffic, so we’ve got to get up more signage,” he said. 

Credit: Quinn Myers/Block Club Chicago
The partial closure of Armitage Avenue in Bucktown for water main work on Sept. 22, 2021

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