The commissioner of the Indiana Department of Transportation says, while major projects like the I-69 extension and the Ohio River Bridges Project are crucial to "moving goods and people around Indiana," the state must continue to shift its focus moving ahead. Brandye Hendrickson says, since Major Moves, INDOT has been in "preservation mode," looking to improve roadway conditions and bridge ratings. She says maintaining infrastructure is just as important as new construction projects.

Hendrickson spoke with Inside INdiana Business from the Indiana Logistics Summit in Indianapolis. She updated the I-69 project, saying the first four sections have been completed, with the fifth set to wrap up in October 2017. She says Section Six, which runs from Martinsville to Indianapolis, will begin "in the near future."

The massive Ohio River Bridges project, which is a partnership between Indiana and Kentucky, continues to progress as well. Earlier this month, INDOT and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet selected California-based Parson Transportation Group Inc. to head up the preliminary design and environmental review for the proposed I-69 Ohio River Crossing Project. Governor Mike Pence has called the proposal, which would connect Evansville with Henderson, Kentucky, an "artery of growth" that will help bring more prosperity to both states.

This week, the final long-term closure related to the Downtown Crossing portion of the $2.3 billion project was completed. Crews reopened the final lanes of traffic to make the John F. Kennedy Memorial Bridge fully open. The I-65 South to I-64 West ramp in southeast Indiana had been closed since December 2015. It is used by around 5,500 drivers daily.

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