Thursday, October 27, 2011
Interstate 69 opens in Kentucky
I-69 signage is now being installed along 55 miles of Interstate 24 and the Wendell Ford/Western Kentucky Parkway, which is being upgraded to interstate standards.
"Indiana congratulates Kentucky on receiving federal approval to upgrade some of their existing parkways for I-69," said Samuel Sarvis, Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) deputy commissioner for major program management. "Kentucky's efforts show Indiana ways the existing State Road 37 might be transformed into I-69 Sections 5 and 6."
Stretching from Texas to Michigan, I-69 has been designated by Congress as a High Priority Corridor of National Significance and one of six "Corridors of the Future." I-69 construction is regarded as a key component to the future economic vitality of southwestern Indiana and will provide necessary connectivity with the rest of the state and the nation.
The I-69 corridor from Evansville to Indianapolis was approved by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in March 2004, based on the Tier 1 Final Environmental Impact Study released in December 2003, which divided the 142 miles into six independent sections. Sixty-five miles of Sections 1, 2 and 3 are currently under construction and scheduled to open at the end of 2012.
In September, FHWA approved the route for 27 miles of Section 4 between Crane and the existing limited-access S.R. 37 south of Bloomington. Section 4 is scheduled to open to traffic by the end of 2014, and bids are being opened for the first construction contract this fall.