Initial Efforts Advance For Peotone Airport In South Suburbs

Current view of Bult Field via FlightAware

Initial efforts have been advanced for the exploration of a new Chicagoland airport in Monee within Will County. Commonly referred to as Peotone Airport for the namesake town just to the south of it, the new facility will build upon the current Bult Field at 28261 S Kedzie Avenue. The push to build an airport here has been ongoing for over 50 years and now state legislators have passed a new bill requiring the Illinois Department of Transportation to start working towards a proposal.

Site context map of Peotone Airport via Google Maps

Sitting roughly 40 miles southwest of the city, initial talks on a south suburban airport began in the 1960s as O’Hare began dominating the jet age. However since then plans have consistently stalled with other nearby airports like Rockford and Gary international struggling to attract both passenger and cargo airlines to their already fully-built facilities. It is also both of those airports who have expressed disdain towards the proposed Peotone facility which will only operate cargo flights.

2014 masterplan for Peotone Airport via IDOT

This time around things are slightly different as the state has slowly been buying acres of land for the new airport over the last few decades for a cost of $100 million, acquiring nearly 90 percent of what is needed. If built, site plans from 2014 show a new roughly 10,000-foot runway similar to those found at O’Hare, as well as multiple new hangars and cargo facilities. A new access road will also be built heading west towards I-57 with new access ramps, eventually the airport will purchase additional surrounding land for expansions.

2014 masterplan for Peotone Airport via IDOT

Hoping to build off of the surge in post-pandemic cargo as well as surrounding warehouses and logistic centers, while the airport is troubling locals with its potential environmental impacts and increased pollution. However at the moment the legislation just requires IDOT to enter into a public-private agreement in order to establish a pre-qualification process for vendors to partake in development, financing, construction, and operations of the airport.

The state is also demanding a demand study for cargo operations in order to avoid a build-first and occupy later approach that will waste public funding. If Governor Pritzker approves the bill HB 2531, IDOT will have six months to seek out developers.

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11 Comments on "Initial Efforts Advance For Peotone Airport In South Suburbs"

  1. ……….seems like some redevelopment for Gary’s airport could be a shot in the arm to Northern Indiana, and, the far south side of the city. Leave the cornfields alone. Don’t take more paradise and put up another parking lot.

  2. Are there any plans to potentially expand the Metra Electric to reach this airport if it is built? Just seems like a logical course of action to me

    • Steve River North | August 1, 2023 at 9:53 am | Reply

      Why? It is supposed to be a cargo airport. You will need roads to the Interstate so semis can drive the cargo to city.

  3. Cornfields are paradise? I would think that the goat-manicured grasslands of O’Hare are more of a paradise than cornfields.

    • Always someone with a stupid remark.
      Untouched land is not yet sprawl. Airport in Gary would help to generate jobs and activity in an already developed but depressed area. There already is transportation to Northern Indiana. This location just spreads the sprawl.

      • I agree with everything except these cornfields being “untouched land”. It’s not.

        • Jacob….look at the first photo of the airstrip from above.
          Drive through Gary. See the potential to bring an American City back to life and a chance to “clean up” and re-urbanize the wasteland that manufacturing steel and disregard for the environment have caused.
          Jobs, injection of money into infrastructure, redevelopment of residential and commercial areas, cleaning the rivers and the bottom of Lake Michigan’s shoreline at the same time…..its a win win.

  4. Robin Kelly and Joyce don’t drive around 45/52 do they? This airport will not only ruin farmland but all the trucks that are on every road! Traffic is crazy and not one shovel has been turn over yet.

  5. Why cant we just update Gary and save the land we have in IL instead of destroying more natural resources and creating more air pollution?

  6. As with all of our progress, our development and our use of advanced technology, questions about what we can do should always be followed by questions about what we’re really gaining, or losing, in the process.

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