South split project begins next week, plan for traffic disruptions

INDOT project set to begin Tuesday

INDIANAPOLIS - The commute for thousands of drivers could become increasingly difficult on Tuesday when a major construction project will disrupt traffic on a large scale.

The Indiana Department of Transportation will begin tearing up pavement on Interstate 65 and Interstate 70 around the south split to lower the roadway to give trucks more clearance to avoid hitting bridges.

The project will force the closing of the express lanes of I-65 and I-70 between the north and south splits, which will result in heavier traffic at other downtown exits.

Eli Lilly’s campus is the closest to the construction project. The company was concerned about its 10,000 workers getting to and from their jobs.

"We've been very proactive in communicating to our employees in a variety of ways about what they need to know and the dates that everything starts, and all the details so that they can be as best prepared as they can," Eli Lilly spokesman Greg Kueterman said.

Lilly isn't planning on changing schedules or providing shuttles, but is asking employees to plan ahead.

"Employees should use their own best judgment on what makes sense for them. But we have told them to plan extra time, to be careful as they're coming downtown to work, whether it's to our corporate center location or our technology center location. Certainly a lot of parts of the city are going to be impacted. So they need to be aware of those things," Kueterman said.

INDOT isn't providing any specific recommendations on detours, but it is providing information on its website and other social media platforms.

"All the information about the project is on the website. It is a lot of information. But if you search, there's a map there that shows you exactly what we will be working on, as well as a map that shows what routes will be open, what routes will be closed, and what ramps will be open and what ramps will be closed," INDOT spokesman Nathan Riggs said.

INDOT hopes to smooth things out by reducing the amount of cross-country traffic moving through downtown Indianapolis on the interstate system.

There are numerous signs on the outskirts of town directing that traffic to circle the city on Interstate 465.

Follow Norman Cox on Twitter: @normancox6

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