The city's top priority is moving ahead with site preparation for the expansion, Andolino said.
Earlier this year, city officials tossed out construction bids that came in over budget for the first new runway on the north airfield.
Much of the work is now focused on building concrete box culverts to divert portions of the relocated Willow-Higgins Creek underground.
Trees are being removed and tall berms excavated on the south airfield to get ready for leveling the land and building runways there.
But about 475 parcels, mostly in Bensenville, still must be acquired, said O'Hare expansion spokesman Roderick Drew.
The land the city needs for new runways includes St. Johannes Cemetery, which Chicago and St. John's United Church of Christ in Bensenville are fighting over in federal court, eight months after the FAA approved the airport expansion.
The first new O'Hare runway in the eight-runway configuration will not open until at least 2008, a full year later than the city's original schedule.
City advances plan to expand airfield despite opposition.
The center will monitor 1 of 2 new runways at O'Hare Airport.
Chicago aviation officials like to point to the 31-year-old airport in Dallas as a proven model for the parallel runways envisioned at the future O'Hare International Airport.