Martinsville Caught In Middle Of I-69 Planning

Martinsville's mayor says he sees benefits to both completing I-69 and stopping it short of his city.

i69kentucky

Photo: vistavision (Flickr)

A sign announcing future construction on I-69.

Martinsville’s mayor says he shares some of the concerns expressed by the Monroe County Metropolitan Planning Organization about Interstate 69, but says he’s advising his citizens to accept the road as an eventuality.  Speaking on WFIU’s “Ask the Mayor,” Phil Deckard said he’s had conversations with Department of Transportation officials about the course of the road through his city, and has been told some plans are still in flux.

“We’re concerned about cutting through our business section, cutting off some of our merchants from the city of Martinsville, from the downtown area proper,” Deckard said.  “But the reality of the situation is it’s coming.”

Deckard said there would be pluses to completing the road from Evansville to Indianapolis, but notes that if Monroe County planners put up procedural roadblocks, stopping the road before it reaches Martinsville could eliminate concerns about the number of interchanges the city gets and where the final right-of-way cuts through town.

“If it stopped at Bloomington, I really don’t think that would hamper the efforts of our Martinsville area geographically as much.  We still have readily accessible highway 37, highway 67.”

Deckard said he believes it’ll be at least five years before construction and operation of the road begins affecting Martinsville in earnest.

Stan Jastrzebski

WFIU/WTIU News Senior Editor Stan Jastrzebski spent time as a reporter with WGN Radio in Chicago and as an editor at Network Indiana, an Indianapolis news service. Stan is the winner of awards from the Associated Press, the RTDNA, the Indiana Broadcasters Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. He hosts WFIU's Ask the Mayor and anchors WTIU's InFocus.

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