Composed of residents, businesses, urban planners and architects, the coalition said it believes the funds allocated to the interstate teardown should be invested in a way that moves Indianapolis to the ranks of great American cities.
The Indiana Department of Transportation plans to tear down, rebuild and widen the interstates. Rebuilding a 50-year old configuration is not forward-thinking, the coalition said. INDOT’s initial phase will cost between $250 million and $300 million, but its overall plan will likely triple that cost when all phases are completed.
“It is imperative we rebuild in a way that provides equal or greater mobility for both commuters and residents,” said Marsh Davis, president of Indiana Landmarks. That enables underutilized property along the current interstate to be valued investments, and that offers new development opportunities by smart utilization of the right-of-way, which fosters an urban lifestyle that attracts and keeps talent for our booming economy.
“Our vision is for a reconstruction that helps take Indiana to the next level--a balance between transportation and quality of place as a transformative solution.”
INDOT is on track to seek accelerated proposals for the first phase of the project – the north split of I-65/I-70 – in early 2019. The impact on Downtown caused by widened bridges, added lanes and tall retaining walls threatens to damage the quality of life in some of the city’s historic and underserved neighborhoods by creating a larger barrier between Downtown and those areas.
INDOT is examining any potential impacts such as noise and pollution.