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Interchange construction won’t start any time soon

The ‘absolute earliest’ construction could start on a second Interstate 64 interchange near Corydon would be six years, according to the project consultant.
More likely, the work would take seven to 10 years to begin.
That’s the word from American Consulting Inc.’s project development director Michael Koyak of Indianapolis, who held the last of three public hearings on the I-64 Sub-Area Transportation Study Thursday evening.
Sixteen people attended, including the three commissioners, J.R. Eckart, Jim Heitkemper and James Goldman, county attorney Christopher Byrd and county engineer Darin Duncan.
Public comments may be made until Dec. 5, and they will be included in the record to be submitted to state highway officials, Koyak said. The Indiana Dept. of Transportation will consider the proposed new interchange next and, if approved, include it in INDOT’s Long Range Plan.
The need for an additional interchange has been established by INDOT.
‘INDOT has determined that the existing interchange may have operational difficulties that will persist in the future,’ Koyak said. ‘Because of the operational difficulties associated with the existing interchange and the potential growth of the Corydon area, INDOT is considering a new interchange to be included in their Long Range Plan along I-64 near Corydon.’
He said INDOT’s next step would be to consider the need for the project and the costs in light of the ‘many other projects in Indiana.’ If the project makes the cut, then the state would conduct an independent study before forwarding it to the federal transportation department.
‘Once it is approved by the feds, it becomes a real project,’ Koyak said.
Areas are under consideration for a new interchange extend west of S.R. 135 to Gethsemane Road, north and south of I-64. Gethsemane Road has been identified as the preferred location.
Several residents in the audience said they live at or near the proposed Gethsemane Road site so they could be displaced by the project. But that wouldn’t happen for quite some time.
Commissioner Eckart noted that the board is attempting to prepare for the future, when traffic will most likely be heavier and delays longer.
‘2030 seems like a long time out, but that’s what we’re planning for, two to three generations out,’ he said. ‘But it will be just a blink of an eye,’ he said, considering how quickly the years seem to have passed since the turn of the century.
Comments may be sent to American Consulting by email, [email protected], or by mail to American Consulting Inc., Attention Michael Koyak, 7260 Shadeland Station, Indianapolis, IN 46256.