Under construction: Ind. 37 utility relocation ongoing, major projects to begin in spring 2020

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Although motorists are seeing utility relocation, drainage construction and detour construction, major Ind. 37 construction won’t begin until spring 2020 on the Fishers portion of the project

Noblesville’s timeline is still undetermined.

Noblesville Communications Manager Robert Herrington said the city plans to let Fishers construct its portion first on the south side of Ind. 37 while Noblesville designs the northern portion, which would run from 146th to Ind. 32/Ind. 38 and include the Greenfield Avenue, Town and Country Boulevard, Pleasant Street and the Ind. 32/38 intersections. However, since the City of Fishers received $100 million from the Indiana Dept. of Transportation to build the southern portion, Herrington said the City of Noblesville must wait to see how much money it can receive from the state because it also is working on an east-west corridor on Pleasant Street.

“That is our main priority, Pleasant Street first,” Herrington said.

City of Fishers Director of Engineering Jason Taylor said motorists won’t see significant work done south of 146th Street during the winter months.

“We’ve recently awarded (bids for) the 126th interchange,” Taylor said. “We had a groundbreaking event there. Most of the work people are seeing today is prep work for maintenance of traffic for next year. The majority of the work done this year is a temporary widening of State Road 37 to allow for four lanes to continue through (during construction).”

Construction is under way on 131st Street to widen it to two lanes each direction to manage detours when they begin.

Active drainage line projects for the southern and northern drainage lines also are under way.

“The purpose of these two drainage lines being constructed is because we are depressing State Road 37 and taking it under the cross streets, similar to Keystone (Parkway),” Taylor said.

TAKING DETOURS

Taylor said traffic detours won’t begin until spring 2020.

“Really, we won’t encourage anyone to change their routes until they have to, whenever we start constructing,” Taylor said. “We will be shifting traffic onto the east side of  (Ind.) 37 so we can construct the west side, and in order to do that, we have to close down access from 126th to the west to 37. So, that traffic will be detoured elsewhere and signed appropriately by utilizing Allisonville and 131st.”

The closure will occur in the spring, and drivers will be unable to access Ind. 37 from 126th Street from the west. The closure will facilitate constructions of the first half of the roundabout interchange. A similar closure/construction will occur on the east side. The 126th Street and Ind. 37 interchange is expected to be open by the end of the 2020 construction season.

Construction on the 146th Street interchange also will begin in the spring.

“146th Street is going to be (on) a two-year construction schedule because of the amount of traffic on 146th,” Taylor said. “We set that maintenance of traffic up to allow for east-west traffic to still flow for the whole duration.”

DIFFERENT INTERCHANGES

146th Street will be a single-point interchange similar to Allisonville Road and I-465, whereas 126th, 131st and 141st streets will be roundabout interchanges similar to Keystone Parkway. 135th Street will be a right-in, right-out intersection, meaning drivers heading southbound on Ind. 37 to access westbound 135th Street will have to travel to 131st Street, use the roundabout interchange and go north to make the turn.

“The traffic generated there is lower but also there needs to be separation between the interchanges,” Taylor said. “We need to have space for an on-ramp and off-ramp, and with interchanges at 126th and 131st, those were extremely tight.”

If all goes as planned, the 126th Street interchange will open by the end of 2020; the 131st, 135th and 146th street interchanges will be open by the end of 2021; and the 141st Street interchange will open by the end of 2022.

Project cost and Noblesville’s involvement

For the Fishers portion of the project, improving Ind. 37 from 126th Street to 146th Street, the City of Fishers contributed $12 million, Hamilton County contributed $12 million and the Indiana Dept. of Transportation contributed $100 million.

The Noblesville portion of the project, continuing the improvements north to Ind. 32/38, hasn’t been finalized. But when it is, Fishers will contribute an additional $4 million, the county will contribute an additional $4 million and Noblesville will contribute $16 million to make each entity’s contributions equal. INDOT hasn’t announced funding for the Noblesville phase.

In addition, the City of Fishers and Hamilton County each contributed $250,000 for marketing efforts to aid businesses during construction. Some businesses are offering special discounts during construction. For business news and detour information, visit 37thrives.com.

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