Posted on

West Corydon interchange on agenda Monday

Harrison Countians can get a first-hand look and voice opinions at a public meeting Monday night on proposals for a new Interstate 64 interchange west of Corydon and long-range plans for major improvements to some county roads.
An Indianapolis consulting firm will present its “Draft Overview Study” for a new interchange. The public session begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Commissioners’ Room at the courthouse.
American Consulting Inc.’s report reiterates the need (established earlier by a survey) for a second I-64 interchange at Corydon to alleviate congestion at the current S.R. 135 interchange. The report identifies three possible sites:
— Gethsemane Road, about 3.2 miles west of the 135 interchange. This alternative would involve construction of a diamond interchange at the underpass. Among other requirements, this option would require about 76 acres of additional right-of-way, of which 71 acres would be limited access. Projected costs: about $11.7 million.
— Midway between the Gethsemane Road and S.R. 337 overpasses, about 2.3 miles west of the 135 interchange. This would require a new connector road linking 337 north of I-64 and 62 south of I-64 and a new bridge at either of the two alternate sites.
“Alternate Plan 2A” would place the connector road at the intersection of S.R. 62, about 2.15 miles northwest of the S.R. 62 intersection with 135, northward for about 1.1 miles to 337. A new bridge would be required. An interchange here would require about 76 acres of additional right of way, of which 66 acres would be limited access. The cost estimate is $20.9 million.
“Alternate Plan 2B” would align the new connector road with the S.R. 62 intersection, about 2.15 miles northwest of the 62 intersection with 135 extending northward about 1.1 miles to 337. This interchange would be about 2.3 miles west of the 135 interchange. About six-tenths of a mile of new pavement would be required to realign Quarry Road to reduce the skew of the intersection with the realigned S.R. 337. This location would require an additional 110 acres of right of way, of which 73 acres would be limited access. Estimated cost: $24.2 million.
— The third option would involve construction of a diamond interchange at the 337 overpass, about 1.6 miles west of the 135 interchange. Placing the interchange here would require about 72 additional acres of limited access right of way. The project would cost an estimated $9.5 million.
The study notes that the first plan involving Gethsemane Road is the interchange location indicated by the Indiana Dept. of Transportation in its statewide interchange study.
“Gethsemane Road will improve interstate access, improve traffic flow, and improve overall safety; however, the location is at the western limit of the anticipated future growth area along I-64,” American Consulting said in its report.
“As such, (Gethsemane Road) will serve only directional traffic flows generated east of Gethsemane Road. Conversely, Alternates 2A, 2B and 3 are centrally located within the growth corridor; therefore, multi-directional traffic flows will be served. In addition, necessary improvements to Gethsemane Road may conflict with the Gethsemane (United Methodist) Church, whose structure may have historical significance.”
A critical step for Harrison County officials once a location has been determined, said Harrison County Engineer Darin Duncan, is to adopt the new interchange location and associated road improvements into the county’s comprehensive plan, so INDOT can be asked to include the interchange into its long-range plan.
“We’re now trying to solidify local consensus,” Duncan said.
Monday night’s meeting will also provide a review of long-range transportation plans, including possibilities for major improvements to some 10 county roads identified in a study by Bernardin Lochmueller & Associates, an Evansville-based engineering firm. “None of these are set in stone,” Duncan said, adding that costs estimates for each proposal will be available Monday night.

LATEST NEWS