New 465/69 Northeast Lanes Open Early
Keystone Avenue interchange work underway; 82nd Street bridge work to begin soon
INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) today opened new traffic lanes, ahead of schedule, for a congested portion of the 465/69 Northeast project between U.S. 31/Meridian Street and Allisonville Road. Milestone Contractors of Columbus had until Nov. 21 to widen and rebuild this section of I-465 from three to five lanes in each direction, one of which is an auxiliary lane dedicated to traffic entering and exiting the interstate. Construction on the $72 million contract began in January with replacement of the Westfield Boulevard and River Road bridges, which also opened a few days ahead of schedule.
“This first 465/69 Northeast contract not only wrapped up prior to holiday shopping at nearby malls, but opened to traffic two weeks early,” said INDOT Commissioner Michael B. Cline. “This could not have been accomplished without the innovative ‘express lane’ traffic pattern that sped construction and minimized disruption.”
Looking ahead, INDOT has awarded two new contracts for the 465/69 Northeast project – the Keystone Avenue interchange and the 82nd Street bridge over I-465. Initial construction on the Keystone Avenue interchange began yesterday, and construction could begin later this month on the 82nd Street bridge, so motorists should stay alert for overnight and weekend lane restrictions, as well as changing traffic patterns. Daytime traffic disruptions aren’t expected until spring 2011.
INDOT awarded an $18.2 million contract to Rieth-Riley Construction of Goshen to convert the I-465 interchange at Keystone Avenue into a partial cloverleaf design. Two looping ramps – northbound Keystone Avenue entering westbound I-465 and southbound Keystone Avenue entering eastbound I-465 – will be built to reduce congestion and allow more free-flow traffic movements. One lane in each direction, plus turns lanes, will be added to Keystone Avenue from just south of 96th Street to 98th Street, but no work is planned on 96th Street itself. The construction is expected to last through fall 2011.
Milestone is also the low bidder for a contract to replace the 82nd Street bridge over I-465. The new 82nd Street bridge will accommodate the future widening of I-465 underneath. Once complete, 82nd Street will remain six lanes wide, with three lanes in each direction, and will have sidewalks for pedestrian access. The $8.8 million project is expected to be complete by fall 2011.
The goal of the 465/69 Northeast project is to improve safety and increase mobility on I-465 and I-69 in northeastern Marion County. The added travel lanes and interchange improvement project includes eight miles of I-465, from just east of the U.S. 31/Meridian Street interchange to just north of Fall Creek Road, as well as more than two miles of I-69, crossing over 82nd Street and ending just south of the 96th Street interchange.