Federal Review Pauses Construction Through Rockford Prairie | Illinois News

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (AP) — Plans to construct a service road for Rockford’s airport through a 25-acre prairie remnant are on hold while the Federal Aviation Administration reviews the project.

The Rockford Register Star reports that the federal agency will determine whether an additional environmental review is needed at the site.

A spokesperson for the agency said officials with the Greater Rockford Airport Authority agreed that construction work will not begin before June 1. The airport is in the midst of a $50 million expansion for cargo operations.

Environmental groups hope the pause will give them time to press for cancellation of any construction through the prairie, known as Bell Bowl.

They have argued that the prairie’s ecosystem cannot be transplanted or recreated somewhere else and is home to several threatened and endangered species.

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