The Indianapolis Board of Public Works awarded a $2.6 million contract to locally-based Morphey Construction Inc. to rebuild a one-block stretch of Market Street west of Monument Circle, the city announced Wednesday.
The contract is part of $10.2 million reconstruction project to Market Street on both the east and west sides of Monument Circle, but it’s only the latest in the city’s wide-ranging list of major transportation and infrastructure projects.
“There is an incredible amount of construction work going on, and I appreciate that from time to time, commuters get annoyed,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett at a news conference Wednesday, before the contract was approved. “But, at the end of the day, we are very excited about the long-overdue and long-awaited overhaul.”
Construction workers will do a “complete reconstruction” of West Market Street from the Circle to Illinois Street, the Department of Public Works said. Work is expected to start by the end of May.
The project will resemble a more extensive one-block reconstruction project on East Market Street that runs from North Delaware Street to North Alabama Street, cutting off traffic since September.
That job will cost $7.6 million, according to DPW spokeswoman Hannah Scott-Carter. It’s a larger area, but also involves work on the entrance to the City-County Building, traffic signal replacement, and more landscaping and stormwater infrastructure, she said.
Unlike on the other side of the Circle, cars and people will still be able to get through the western spoke of Market Street during the new construction project, according to the department.
Bricks on the road had long been coming loose, said DPW Chair Dan Parker at the news conference.
“Part of that is because the concrete underneath is failing,” he said.
The original concrete is more than 75 years old, Parker added, and will now be replaced.
When the dust settles, expect diagonal parking, wider sidewalks, narrower traffic lanes, shorter crosswalks and a “plaza-like atmosphere,” he said.
Work on both projects is expected to wrap up by the end of the year, according to the department.
But they’re each only the first phase of an even bigger project, representing the “first leg of what we hope is a full reconstruction of Market Street and the Circle,” Parker said.
Eventually, the city hopes to re-do another few blocks of Market Street, and hit the northern and southern spokes of the Circle as well, according to Scott-Carter.