IBJNews

State to beef up busy south-side interchange

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

State highway officials are accepting public comments through today on the most recent design tweaks for a $45 million reconstruction of the busy interchange at interstates 65 and 465 south of Indianapolis.

The Indiana Department of Transportation will add another lane in both directions of I-65 between the interchange and Southport Road. More lanes also would be added to I-465, east of the interchange. And a single-lane ramp from northbound I-65 to eastbound I-465 would be widened to two lanes.

The latest changes keep in place the most dramatic feature unveiled earlier this year: a flyover ramp from westbound I-465 to southbound I-65. The flyover will replace a tight-radius loop ramp on the northwest corner of the interchange that causes traffic to creep onto I-65 South, particularly when semi trucks use it.

Many of the public comments received so far pertain not to the changes in traffic movements, said INDOT spokesman Will Wingfield.

“It’s been about noise,” he said.

So the latest design proposal contemplates additional noise walls, particularly south of the interchange on I-65. As a result, the cost of the project has risen to $45 million from $36 million projected earlier.

The updated plans leave in place a peculiar legacy design feature of the interchange: ramps that feed I-65 traffic into the high-speed left lanes of I-465. That occurs where southbound I-65 traffic enters eastbound I-465, and where northbound I-65 enters westbound I-465.

There was no need to alter those ramps because problems don’t occur at those points like they do at northbound I-65 to eastbound I-465, and the I-465 westbound to southbound I-65, Wingfield said. “Those are the ones that back up most frequently.”

About 110,000 vehicles per day travel on I-465 and 106,000 on I-65 in the vicinity of the interchange, according to INDOT records. That compares with about 125,500 vehicles on I-465 between Allisonville Road and Interstate 69/Binford Avenue on the northeast side of Indianapolis.

The I-65/I-465 interchange improvements will provide welcome new business potential for highway contractors, who will get a chance to bid in July of next year. Construction is to start later in 2013, with completion likely in late 2014.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • 65&465
    People calm down. You people realize when they complete i69 traffic at 65&465 will ease up. Why? Because traffic coming from and going to Bloomington, Evansville and all points in between use 65. So just wait till its finished then see what happens. Traffic going to and from Columbus, Louisville, etc will use 65 only. This will eliminate at least a quarter of the cars at that intersection.
  • So how many people who live along the interstate were there before the interstate? I have no sympathy and hate having to pay for noise reduction when the folks who bought there knew there was an interstate there.
  • Is Commuter Based
    Eric, your assumption is incorrect. Employment density in Greenwood has nothing to do with it. It's the residential density as people commute home. The heavy commuter traffic heads south from downtown to the homes along Southport, County Line, etc. This commuter traffic causes congestion at the intersection with 465. This congestion slows the traffic merging from 465 W to 65 S. Eventually the slowdown causes backups on 465 because 465 traffic is impeded by the large amount of commuter traffic on 65 south. I drive it everyday and can assure you the source of the problem is with commuter traffic on 65 south, not with trucks coming from Ohio.
  • Not commuter based
    If the traffic is most problematic on I-65S from I-465 is occurring in the afternoon, then it can't be commuter based. The employment density in Greenwood is virtually non-existent, so most of that must be caused by semis coming from Ohio and headed toward Kentucky (or the logistics centers in Greenwood) that cannot easily negotiate the curve onto the I-65S. I'm not the least bit opposed to HOV or Express lanes, but that seems to be a commuter based solution when the problem here is with trucks.
    • HOV Lanes
      Why does Indianapolis not have HOV lanes? When I travel from Indy to Atlanta, I absolutely love the HOV lanes. Nashville and Atlanta both have them, and they save so much time. I honestly think HOV lanes could be added all over the metro, and I think a "pay as you go" type system would be great for the Fishers-to-Indianapolis route (I-69, I-465, I-70.) Many people would pay to bypass traffic. On topic of the I-65/I-465 ramp, it definitely needs at least one extra lane in each direction if not more. And the flyover ramp will make traffic so much smoother!
    • Noise issues and wasted money
      There are some serious noise issues along the 65 stretch. They did review the plans and added a few noise barriers but are still ignoring the stretch between the interchange and a point just north of Edgewood Road along I-65 because it is not "cost-effective" even though two lanes will be added and the ramp from northbound I65 to eastbound I465. (I won't even mention that all that will do is feed more traffic to sit because of all the lights on Emerson just as you get off that ramp. At the same time they are going to take out a bridge that was completely rebuilt less than two years ago (estimated cost - a few million) because of the new flyover ramp. So I really don't understand how not including noise barriers all along I65 is less cost effective than all the money wasted on rebuilding the bridge.
    • Bravo!
      American Dirt obviously doesn't travel this area during afternoon rush hour. There are HUGE commuter traffic problems getting onto I-65 from I-465 westbound. In fact, I-465 can back up all the way to Washington St. on I-465 southbound, all crawling to the I-65 South ramp. Kudos to IN for the flyover ramp design, which works very well at I-74 & I-465. Another option IN doesn't seem to ever consider is restricted express lanes, such as one on I-65 South that doesn't allow exiting until at least south of Southport Road and maybe south of County Line Rd., and a desperately needed one on Binford Ave. north of 75th St. that doesn't allow exiting until north of 96th St. or even until north of 116th St.
    • HOV
      If there were any real commuter traffic problems along I-65, HOV would be a welcome inclusion. But there is not. The density along the I-65 south corridor through Greenwood pales next to anything in Fishers and I-69. And Greenwood simply isn't high-growth enough that the I-65 LOS is likely to change that much in the next decade. The only possible reason this interchange enhancement would be necessary is to accommodate trucks and the logistics industry.
      • Fix It
        Merging into the left high-speed lanes is awkward. It may not cause traffic backups, but while you're fixing everything, why not fix that safety issue too? It's never going to get cheaper.
      • So 1984
        How about the inclusion of an HOV lane to provide an incentive to reduce the number of vehicles on the road so that we might not need to spend money on a similar widening in another ten years or so?

      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. By Mr. Lee's own admission, he basically ran pro-bono ads on the billboard. Paying advertisers didn't want ads on a controversial, ugly billboard that turned off customers. At least one of Mr. Lee's free advertisers dropped out early because they found that Mr. Lee's advertising was having negative impact. So Mr. Lee is disingenous to say the city now owes him for lost revenue. Mr. Lee quickly realized his monstrosity had a dim future and is trying to get the city to bail him out. And that's why the billboard came down so quickly.

      2. Merchants Square is back. The small strip center to the south of 116th is 100% leased, McAlister’s is doing well in the outlot building. The former O’Charleys is leased but is going through permitting with the State and the town of Carmel. Mac Grill is closing all of their Indy locations (not just Merchants) and this will allow for a new restaurant concept to backfill both of their locations. As for the north side of 116th a new dinner movie theater and brewery is under construction to fill most of the vacancy left by Hobby Lobby and Old Navy.

      3. Yes it does have an ethics commission which enforce the law which prohibits 12 specific items. google it

      4. Thanks for reading and replying. If you want to see the differentiation for research, speaking and consulting, check out the spreadsheet I linked to at the bottom of the post; it is broken out exactly that way. I can only include so much detail in a blog post before it becomes something other than a blog post.

      5. 1. There is no allegation of corruption, Marty, to imply otherwise if false. 2. Is the "State Rule" a law? I suspect not. 3. Is Mr. Woodruff obligated via an employment agreement (contractual obligation) to not work with the engineering firm? 4. In many states a right to earn a living will trump non-competes and other contractual obligations, does Mr. Woodruff's personal right to earn a living trump any contractual obligations that might or might not be out there. 5. Lawyers in state government routinely go work for law firms they were formally working with in their regulatory actions. You can see a steady stream to firms like B&D from state government. It would be interesting for IBJ to do a review of current lawyers and find out how their past decisions affected the law firms clients. Since there is a buffer between regulated company and the regulator working for a law firm technically is not in violation of ethics but you have to wonder if decisions were made in favor of certain firms and quid pro quo jobs resulted. Start with the DOI in this review. Very interesting.

      ADVERTISEMENT