IBJNews

New highways funds aimed at I-65, job creation

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Gov. Mike Pence on Thursday formerly announced plans to use $200 million in newly released funds to expand sections of Interstate 65 in a project that could boost job creation while reducing travel time for many commuters in the Indianapolis area.

IBJ first reported on the plans for I-65 expansion project in a March 31 story.

"If you're going to be the Crossroads of America," said Pence, citing Indiana's nickname, "You have to have the roads to back it up."

Money for construction was locked away in a special savings fund until the governor signed legislation last week for its release. The construction planned with the money, as well as an additional $200 million that's being held pending review, could create as many as 9,800 jobs in the state if used in one year, said Indiana Department of Transportation spokesman Will Wingfield.

Lawmakers originally meant to put away $200 million each year for 20 years to pay for future large construction projects.

Pence requested to use the first two years of savings immediately despite Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Luke Kenley's concerns about spending the money too soon.

"What we've seen is that the construction cost was outpacing the interest revenue," Wingfield said. "We should spend this money now...before the purchase power gets eroded."

The second half of the $400 million in highway funding approved by legislators will be held pending a review of the state's finances in December.

INDOT aims for expansion of I-65 between State Road 44 near Franklin and Southport Road Indianapolis with the existing money.

Additional lanes also are planned between State Roads 38 and 26 near Lafayette.

Bidding on the two interstate sections is scheduled for this fall, although construction might not start until next spring, Wingfield said.

Commuters, particularly those from the South side of Indianapolis, could see both a shorter drive to work and more consistency in how long it takes to drive back and forth, Wingfield said.

Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma said the expansion could help relieve dangerous chokepoints and called the legislation an "important jobs bill."

In addition to thousands of jobs from building the lanes, Pence said better roads could help Indiana's economy.

"When I say 'roads mean jobs,' I don't just mean the thousands of Hoosiers that will undoubtedly be put to meaningful employment using their professional skills to create effective highways in the state of Indiana," Pence said. "Having the right infrastructure in Indiana is absolutely essential to our people achieving our full potential and prosperity."

If the revenue forecast is optimistic and the State Budget Committee authorizes the transfer of the second $200 million, there are three exansion projects the state plans to undertake:

— I-65 in the Lafayette area from SR 26 to SR 25;

—  I-69 from SR 37 in Fishers to SR 13 in Madison County;

— I-65 from Sellersburg (exit 9) to Memphis (exit 16) in Clark County.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Bill.....
    Paul and I were being sarcastic about voting. INDOT spends at will on road specific projects, but any push for transit requires people to engage the world on local issues. The job "creation" is essentially a myth. It is the equivalent of seasonal workers in a resort town. Sure, it is great at the moment, but after the project, the workers move on or file for unemployment.
  • Oops.
    Typo time. In my post "Wrong priority" I meant to type - "Otherwise we need to invest in maintaining..."
  • Wrong priority
    That's nice that Gov. Pence thinks a project like this help Indiana earn a name as a crossroads. Evidently he hasn't been up & down I-65 lately. Long sections of it are falling apart. Adding more lanes will invite more traffic as opposed to getting some of it off the road with transit alternatives. Otherwise we nice to invest in maintaining the roads we currently have.
    • Not in this State
      What referendum?? Re-read the article Paul and Joe. No referendum. No balloting.
    • Sprawl sprawl sprawl
      Is the referendum vote on spending this money on roads before or after the mass transit referendum?
      • Yikes!
        What a scam...........I can't wait until this goes to the ballot to be voted on!
      • This is not job creation
        You are supposed to be a "business" journal yet you seem not to understand what an Econ 101 student would, that is, the difference between job creation and government make work projects. It is nice that Congress sees fit to return to Indiana $200 million that we paid in as taxes, but to confuse a road project with economic growth is bizarre and silly. My goodness, are we clueless or what? There is no economy here, mostly because we keep confusing things like building roads and attracting Super Bowls with economic growth.

        Post a comment to this story

        COMMENTS POLICY
        We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
         
        You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
         
        Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
         
        No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
         
        We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
         

        Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

        Sponsored by
        ADVERTISEMENT

        facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

        Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
        Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
         
        Subscribe to IBJ
        1. Uh, sorry Johnnie, but you are incorrect. Despite the assertions by yourself and various defenders and captains, sports attendance is NOT off significantly at most sporting events in the US. Variances in attendance has been in the range of single digits, both + & - for years now. MLB has had most of its best overall attendance nubers in the last decade, and that trend has been consistent for most major sporting events. The number one issue cited by most fans when asked about attendance is the overall cost of attending. The presence of HD and big screen televisions in home doesn't even register, as a factor for not attending an event. VALUE in the product is the key, and apparently is something lacking in the current ICS. What other explanation is there when with what is routinely touted as the "best" racing on the planet, fans are staying away in DROVES. A "close" title battle into the last event at Fontana, with the "cars and stars" of the ICS, and who showed up? MAYBE 8K. Sorry, but HD TV isn't to blame for that kind of fan apathy.

        2. Do you need finance to establish your business ? Are you interested in getting a loan at 3% from our private company? If so please Email: suntrust_oil@blumail.org

        3. If she was worth the $ the public outcry over direct tv dropping them would have kept them on their dishes as we have seen with other companies. I too quit watching channel 13 after she showed up since I left channel 8 because of her all show rather than production results. When Randy on 8 corrected her she had a big head and incorrectly challenged his correction for pronunciation of a city. Other antics while she matures was too much for me with her very inaccurate forecasts. All the forecasters were predicting rain until Thursday except Chris. They predicted sunny on Thursday but instead of rain until Thursday upon which the sun would finally make it out in full glory Chris was right on the money just as I too predicted looking at the radar on weather.gov. One thing I love about Angela is the fear you can see in her every time it thunders in the winter. It far exceeds the entertainment value of her body language (high heel noise drags, depression, etc) when her forecasts are so incorrect. Her hair stands on end, you have to see it!!!

        4. Good Day, Apply For A Loan I am Mr Fernadez Antonio, a private Loan lender and a cooperate financial for real estate and any kinds of business financing. I also offer Loans to individuals, Firms and cooperate bodies at 3% interest rate We offer any kind of loans. email us via fernadezloaninvest@outlook.com LOAN APPLICATION FORM First name:......................... Middle name:......................... Last name:........................................ Date of birth (yyyy-mm-dd):....................... Gender:........................................... Marital status:................................... Total Amount Needed............................... Loan Duration.................................... Address:.......................................... City:............................................. State/province:................................... Zip/postal code:.................................. Country:.......................................... Phone:............................................ Fax:.............................................. Mobile/cellular:.................................. Monthly Income.................................... Occupation:....................................... Best Regard, Mr Fernadez Antonio.

        5. i will love to share my testimony to you all the people in world i got married to my husband about 2 year ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,fighting about little things he always comes home late at night,drinking too much and sleeping with other women out side i have never love any man in my life except him. he is the father of my child and i don't want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are and have today .few month ago he now decided to live me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken.i called my mom and explain every thing to her,my mother told me about DR.okoro how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad i was surprise about it because they have been without each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back to each other. i was directed to DR. okoro on his email:okorospell@gmail.com and explain everything to him,so he promise me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we where so much in love again and that it was another female spirit that was controlling my husband he told me that my problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OK So he cast a spell for me and after two days my love came back asking me to forgive him i Am so happy now. so that why i decided to share my experience with every body that have such problem contact Dr okoro the great spell caster on his email addresses spellcasterforlove@outlook.com

        ADVERTISEMENT