Although utility relocation, drainage and detour construction is ongoing, major Ind. 37 construction won’t begin until spring 2020. City of Fishers Director of Engineering Jason Taylor said drivers won’t see significant work done 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 in two lanes each direction to manage traffic detours. There also are active drainage line projects for the southern and northern drainage lines.
“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.
Taylor said drivers won’t need to worry about detours until spring 2020.
“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 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. Drivers will be unable to access Ind. 37 from 126th Street if coming from the west because the first half of the roundabout interchange will be constructed. 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 will begin in the spring as well.
“146th Street is going to be 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.”
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 trying 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. We need to have space for an on-ramp and off-ramp, and with interchanges at 126th and 131st, those were extremely tight,” Taylor said.
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 contributions equal. The Indiana Dept. of Transportatin 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.