The Indiana Department of Transportation, in partnership with the state of Kentucky, has updated the preferred route alternative for the I-69 Ohio River Crossing project in southwest Indiana. The $1.5 billion project will add a new, four-lane bridge extending the interstate across the Ohio River at Evansville.
The preferred route was first announced in 2018, however some details had not been confirmed, particularly related to tolling. The project includes the construction of the new bridge, as well as retention the northbound U.S. 41 bridge, which will be converted for two-way travel to support local traffic.
INDOT now says the new I-69 bridge will be tolled, while the U.S. 41 bridge will not be tolled. The southbound U.S. 41 bridge will be demolished as part of the project.
“Our globally recognized transportation network and prime location make Indiana one of the most attractive places in the U.S. to do business,” Holcomb said in a news release. “Advancing the I-69 Ohio River Crossing as we finish construction of I-69 between Evansville and Indianapolis further enhances our connectivity regionally and nationally. Our progress on this transformational effort sends a strong message to job creators that Indiana will continue to offer best-in-class infrastructure for generations to come.”
INDOT says selecting the preferred alternative route will allow for the Final Environmental Impact Statement and Record of Decision to be published, which is expected to take place this year.
Construction on the I-69 Ohio River Crossing project is expected to begin after the final section of the I-69 extension between Martinsville and Indianapolis opens in late 2024.
Indiana and Kentucky are sharing the costs of the design and construction of the project using a combination of toll revenue and existing state and federal transportation funds, according to INDOT.