http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20120102/news/701029960/ The big transportation story of the year is, of course, the Illinois tollway’s rate hike, which took effect Sunday. That is, until Metra eclipses the tollway with a fare increase coming at you Feb. 1. Happy 2012. Maybe it’s time to rediscover Pace. I recently talked to Illinois State Toll Highway Authority Executive Director Kristi Lafleur about what drivers will gain in exchange for the hit to our wallets. The agency is nearly doubling tolls to pay for its Move Illinois construction program. For $12 billion, you get repairs to existing roads, an interchange at I-57 and the Tri-State Tollway (I-294), a widened Jane Addams Tollway (I-90), studies of extending Route 53 north and building the Illiana Expressway. But wait, there’s more! Of great interest to suburban road warriors is the long-talked of extension of the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway to O’Hare International Airport.