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Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago Lays Out Timeline for New Construction

 Construction on the new Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago 
	begins July 1.
Construction on the new Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago begins July 1.
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DNAinfo/Lizzie Schiffman

STREETERVILLE — Construction on the new Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago facility on McClurg Court and Huron Street will kick off with a groundbreaking July 1 and last a little more than three years, developers said at a third community meeting Tuesday.

Representatives from Power Construction met with about 50 Streeterville residents to present an updated construction timeline and answer questions about traffic patterns, light pollution and other issues.

The substructure, which includes "mostly foundation work," is expected to be completed by the end of 2013. Construction should be entirely finished by fall 2016. Allowing time for the move and employee training, the new RIC building is expected to open during "the first part of 2017," said Bob Gallo, Power Construction's senior vice president.

The team aims to remove barricades surrounding the site "in time for the 2015 holiday season," he said.

"We'll do our darndest to make this as pleasant as we possibly can," Gallo said.

That includes establishing set traffic patterns around the construction site, which will only allow trucks to travel east on Chicago Avenue, south on McClurg Court and west on Ontario Street.

Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd) said he recently sat down with the development team behind the new facility replacing Prentice Hospital to discuss how the two construction projects can work in tandem with limited overflow into the streets.

The Prentice team was "favoring heavy-duty use of Chicago Avenue as well," Reilly said. "So we gave them some notes. We're gonna sit back down with them again in a few days."

Chuck Blazek, Power's senior superintendent and the community liaison for the project, said construction is scheduled to run from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. six days a week, but "under some circumstances," hours could be extended until 8 p.m. and for a full seven-day week.

In total, there will be between 50 and 75 trucks leaving the site daily, including 15 to 20 concrete trucks "coming in and out during the 10-week excavation from October through the end of the year," Blazek said.

"We're trying to get the trucks into the site as fast as we possibly can," Blazek said.

Residents raised concerns about site lighting, which Power's Sean Bowker said would be aimed at the site directly and set with timers that shut them off late in the evening. RIC and the development team will also foot the bill for 24-hour security at the site.

RIC's Nancy Paridy urged community members to work with RIC and Power Construction rather than against them.

"We want to hear from you," she said. "Don't be frustrated, don't grumble amongst yourselves. Come talk to us."

Paridy said the project is being funded by a combination of tax exempt financing and philanthropic donations. Northwestern owns the land that houses the current RIC building at 345 E. Superior St., so if the rehabilitation institute chooses not to keep the current building, Paridy said "it would be up to Northwestern" to decide how to use the space.