GRANITE CITY, IL (KTVI)– Sue Ann Archer and a group of Chouteau Township residents are fired up. They’re passing out petitions to stop the potential closure of a rail road crossing at Morrison Road.
Morrison is the main entrance to the small subdivision. Residents say they only have two ways in and the second entry along Pontoon Road will force emergency crews to take a longer route to reach those in need.
“The railroad is an entrance to our area. If they close that, that railroad it’s going to be trouble because the ambulance police and fire department is on the other side of the tracks,” said resident Sue Ann Archer.
“I was told that they were going to close that railroad. My main concern is so many of the roads in the area dead end,” said Madison County Board Member Helen Hawkins.
Locals say they had no idea about the proposed closure that could affect Chouteau Township, Pontoon Beach, Nameoki and Granite City. Calls were made to Union Pacific, the Granite City mayor’s office and Illinois Senator Bill Haine to find out more about the plan. According to Granite City mayor Ed Hagnauer, “We’re waiting on a formal proposal from the railroad on our wish list, which includes safety measures. The city council will have to examine it to make a final decision.”
Chouteau township residents say they have at least 60 people out with petitions and have 2,000 signatures so far. They plan to present their petitions to city and state officials.
“If I have to lay my life lay down on those tracks, I’ll be there with company. A bunch of us will be on those tracks,” said Hawkins.