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Building demolition to begin along Interstate 69

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The Indiana Department of Transportation plans to accept demolition contract proposals Aug. 4 for the first building in the way of Interstate 69 expansion just north of I-465 on the northeast side of Indianapolis.

The former, 8,407-square-foot headquarters of August Mack Environmental, at 8007 Castleton Road, is set to be demolished by the end of October.

August Mack moved to a new home at 1200 N. Meridian St. about two years ago. The company's doomed former office complex, now sprouting weeds, is already precariously close to the southbound lanes of I-69.

Another 14,383 square feet of former August Mack parking lots are also to be erased to make room for a widened I-69 and a dramatically reconfigured interchange at I-465. Blueprints show that a new ramp to westbound I-465 will be built atop the doomed property.

“This is an early-acquisition property,” said Will Wingfield, an INDOT spokesman, saying the property became available about a year ago.

Three years ago, INDOT moved the historic Whitesell Cemetery, which was just south of the August Mack office, to begin making room for the interstate project.

Construction began in earnest last year on the $567 million project to widen and rebuild eight miles of I-465 and just over two miles of I-69.

According to INDOT, the “most significant impacts” on property will involve work on I-69.  In addition to the old August Mack site are several small buildings and a self-storage facility to be partly or totally demolished. Also potentially affected is a Hampton Inn along the west side of the interstate, just south of 82nd Street.

Just north of the former August Mack site is an office building at 8021 Castleton Road that houses credit union marketing firm iDiz Inc. The company’s CEO, Kent Dicken, said he knows his building is on borrowed time but isn’t sure when it will be needed for the I-69 project, which is still at least three years away. The company has been on a month-to-month lease. “We’re looking to move,” he said.

Already under way is the widening of I-465 and bridge replacement between College Avenue and the White River.

Next year, INDOT plans to rebuild the Keystone Avenue interchange and begin work on I-465 between 75th Street to Fall Creek, including a new 82nd Street bridge over the interstate.

Work on the I-465/I-69 interchange won’t begin until 2014, under current INDOT plans. It “is one of the most frequently traveled [interchanges] in central Indiana, with more than 150,000 vehicles traveling in the area daily,” said INDOT.

Not until 2015 is construction work scheduled for the I-69 portion of the project. However, INDOT has been trying to accelerate some projects amid a slow economy to allow it to strike more favorable terms with hungry contractors and to take advantage of lower construction-materials prices.

INDOT has found ways to minimize commercial dislocation on the I-465 portion of the northeast interstate project.

Two years ago, project maps showed that a number of commercial buildings could have been affected on the eastern edge of I-465, including the offices of WFMS-FM 95.5 and its sister stations. At one point, an INDOT consultant said the radio complex could cost $3.5 million to acquire.

But newer maps of the project show that commercial buildings along the interstate will be saved, except possibly for a Kinder Care center on the northeast corner of I-465 and 75th Street.  Plans call for a wider 75th Street bridge over the interstate in that area.

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  • about mass transit in portland
    Portlands public transit isn't perfect. They built the red line along I84 between 205 and 5, and neither the freeway nor the rail lines can be expanded. MAX ridership isn't as wide spread as 'they' lead you to believe. Traffic in Portland is still awful.
  • Portland, OR
    Take a look at Portland, Oregon. Instead of paving more and more land with concrete they went the route of mass transit, and it has done great things.
    If you build it, and people have the option to sit in traffic, or have a nice (lower stress) ride on a train - they'll come around.
    • mass don't ride
      Anytime even a bus route is expanded or rerouted to act as "mass transit" for the northeast area, no rides and it is ended. Spending large amounts, even larger than the afore mention highway funds, for trains that won't have passgers just like expanded bus service. Many large cities have pumped money down this drain hole and come up with a system which is under utilized. The bigger quesion for highway dolars which come from gas taxes is, if electric cars take off, where are decrease in gas tax dollars going to come from? Smokers?
    • wrong again.....
      I can't believe that as advanced and as "intelligent" as we are supposed to be we still can't ween ourselves from the automobile. I sit here and read story after story of road building and reconstruction projects while failing to hear any real long term plan of other transit forms. I wonder why people are so at ease with the concept of billions of dollars going to a non income producing, non self-supporting endless waste of resources. I think it is time to start speaking the truth about the actual costs of road work and let people decide on a level playing field which they prefer, road projects or mass transit!
    • Rail Transit
      I commute from Bloomington everyday and would love to see a high speed rail system in place from B-Town to Indy. I would be one of the first in line to purchase a ticket. I think it is something that could be done with current infrastructure in place. I think building or expanding current roads is a wast e of taxpayer money and we would be wise to look into alternatives for future growth and expansion. Just my .02.
      • Not until the users pay
        Mass transit is a nice idea, but it is my hope that a shovel never touches the dirt until it's funded by those using it. Everybody wants additional taxes to support light rail (or something like it) between Hamilton County or Johnson County and Indianapolis, with the possibility of eventually extending elsewhere. So everyone in the region pays a tax that benefits a small few. If you want it, and you use it, then you pay for it; not on my dime.
        • Train
          Trains a 21st century idea? Try 19th.
        • Mass Transit
          It has been proven that expanding the current highway system will merely lead to more usage of a growing non efficient system of population movement. We have only so much space and the only answer is dedicated system of mass transit to relieve the over burdened roads.

          This will also aid greatly in Indianapolis securing more large events which add to the local economy.
        • Your Comment About Transit Is Off
          eagle2under, with all due respect, your comment about mass transit is a bit off. First, hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent building a reliable and well-connected highway system in the Indianapolis metro area, and hundreds of billions of additional dollars have allocated to expand and improve this system--in fact, major repairs and expansion are ongoing. Second, any funds for public transit would not come at the expense of highway funding. Federal mass transit is fairly limited and it comes from funding programs specifically designated to fund mass transit. Proposed local funding would come from a regional sales tax, so it would not draw from any highway funding. Finally, the longer the metro area goes with planning focused solely on highways and without adequate public transit, the more it will spread out and become ever more dependent on highways. It simply leads to an endless cycle of highway building and construction, and each expansion will fairly quickly fill to capacity and require another round of expansion and improvement. Mass transit when properly planned and built provides a supplemental form of transportation. Also, the initial plan for mass transit is to put it in higher density areas residential and commercial corridors, and contrary to your claims, these areas do NOT primarily rely traffic from rural areas and area well-suited for mass transit. Also, I am not sure why you think Federal highway won't be reauthorized. It always has been and always will be.
        • Progress
          Before we spend money on a commuter rail, we should at least provide a highway system that is not broke down. There might be a place for mass transit at some point, but we have to find a way to fund it. Indianapolis has most of the traffice from rural areas and would not support mass transit at this time. The funding for highways is at a critical point with no reauthorization of the Federal bill in sight.
          • Map of project
            Try this link
            http://www.465-69northeast.in.gov/
          • Maps?
            Can anyone direct me to maps of proposed construction for this area?
          • Train
            Sadden to see that we are moving forward protecting our cars and trucks communter times rather than progressing to CIRTA's plan to construct a commuter rail. At some point, we must all establish a collective voice and vote to spend money more efficiently and progress out of the 20th Century.

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