A new report suggests traffic in parts of the state is on the decline. The study from the Indiana Department of Transportation and Purdue University shows congestion on Indiana's interstate system has dropped between six and 18 percent since 2011. The department says the Sherman Minton Bridge project in southern Indiana and the widening of the Borman Expressway in Gary have helped spark the improvement. INDOT spokesman Will Wingfield says time lost in traffic has “real impact” on Indiana business, and improving the infrastructure has economic benefits. August 12, 2013

News Release

CLARK COUNTY, LAKE COUNTY and INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A joint report published by Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) traffic engineers and Purdue University researchers shows:

-The impact of the five-month Sherman Minton Closure, which detoured I-64 traffic in Southern Indiana. I-65 southbound segments approaching Louisville claimed multiple spots in the 2012 Indiana Mobility Report's top congestion rankings, which also showed travel time improvements upon completion of I-64 Sherman Minton and I-65 Kennedy Memorial bridge repairs.

-Improvements in I-80/I-94 travel speeds upon completion of Borman Expressway widening and reconstruction in September 2011. The 2012 Indiana Mobility Report also ranks congestion on Indiana’s interstates, including increases or reductions in travel time.

-Significant improvements in I-465 west leg travel speeds during 2012 as the Accelerate 465 widening and reconstruction project opened to traffic. The 2012 Indiana Mobility Report also ranks congestion on Indiana’s interstates, including increases or reductions in travel time.

The report indicates that Indiana's transportation infrastructure continues to improve, with most occurrences of significant congestion attributable to construction, severe weather and nonrecurring incidents. Since 2011, congestion on Indiana's interstate system was reduced by 6 to 18 percent.

Making year-over-year comparisons and studying heavily traveled commuter corridors improves upon the 2011 Indiana Interstate Mobility Report, which was recognized last week at the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) Annual Meeting in Boston. ITE’s Management & Operations/Intelligent Transportation Systems Council presented INDOT with its 2013 Project Achievement Award. The award recognizes the development or implementation of notable projects that demonstrate the use of Intelligent Transportation Systems technologies to benefit society by improving mobility.

Third-party data providers such as INRIX collect anonymous speed records from navigation systems, mobile phones and other electronics, and then disseminate this information as traffic alerts on GPS devices or red-yellow-green overlays for online and local media traffic reports. INDOT and Purdue partnered under their Joint Transportation Research Program to analyze billions of anonymous speed records compiled from road segments statewide.

The innovative mobility performance measures are intended as a planning tool to help INDOT and policymakers shape future infrastructure investment priorities, and the measures were presented last week to a joint study committee of the Indiana General Assembly.

In 1937, the Indiana General Assembly passed legislation that led to the formation of what is now known as the Joint Transportation Research Program (JTRP) to facilitate collaboration between INDOT and Purdue University. JTRP research projects help INDOT identify and implement innovation opportunities that solve Indiana’s transportation challenges, and the program has been recognized nationally as a model for interaction between government, academia and industry. More than 1,500 technical reports are available for free through a unique collaboration between JTRP and Purdue Libraries.

The 2012 Indiana Mobility Report and the inaugural 2011 report are available at http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/imr.

Source: The Indiana Department of Transportation

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