No. 3 -- I-69 construction moving quickly
Despite disapproval from some along the construction zone, the extension of Interstate 69 is quickly progressing.
The new section of interstate, which will connect Indianapolis and Evansville, will bisect a portion of southeastern Greene County.
Land surveying by the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) began in August 2009 in Greene County and construction began in April 2010.
Road crews are working 24 hours a day in order to complete construction of Section 3 of the roadway by the end of 2012.
Section 3 begins just north of U.S. 50 east of Washington and runs through Daviess County into Greene County. The section continues to U.S. 231, just north of the Crane Naval Surface Warfare Center.
Since the ground-breaking a year and a half ago the crew has completed an overpass bridge near Mount Nebo Church on County Road 100 W, which is south of the Newberry-Scotland Road (County Road 700 S).
There are approximately 160 contracted employees working in the area from the U.S. 231 interchange south to CR 1400N working to construct 14 bridges and the roadway.
"Approximately 40,000 cubic yards of soil is being moved per day when the weather is suited," INDOT spokesperson Cheri Elliottt told the Greene County Daily World recently.
Bloomfield School District has had to plan around the construction near U.S. 231, warning parents of possible 15 minute bus delays when picking up and dropping off students.
Opponents of the I-69 extension have voiced their opinion, saying the rush to get the roadway complete has caused a slew of accidents.
"It is really distressing what we see going on. ... Basically, they're in a big rush, and risks are being taken which shouldn't be," Sandra Tokarski, a member of Citizens for Appropriate Rural Roads, Inc. (CARR), said in November.
INDOT officials stressed that upon investigations of the group's concerns, they believe no safety problems exist.
-- Sabrina Westfall