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Officials Release More Details About I-69 Ohio River Crossing

Transportation officials have narrowed down three alternatives to the eventual Ohio River crossing.

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Transportation officials say all three potential routes for an I-69 bridge connecting Evansville and western Kentucky are likely to require tolling to fund the project.

I-69 Ohio River Crossing – or ORX – has been evaluating potential options for the highway bridge project that could cost as much as $1 billion.

The group originally considered five routes, but narrowed the options down to three last summer. This week’s announcement comes with far more detail, including proposed interchanges.

“This is the level of detail we know many people in the community have been anxious to hear,” said Janelle Lemon, Indiana Department of Transportation project manager, in a statement. “After extensive engineering analyses and evaluation, our team has developed a range of preliminary alternatives to complete the I-69 connection between Indiana and Kentucky, improve long-term cross-river mobility, reduce congestion and delay and improve safety.”

Transportation officials from both Indiana and Kentucky will continue refining the remaining three alternatives and is expected to make a final choice this fall.

Residents can learn more and give feedback at two open houses scheduled for next week:

Henderson: Tuesday, Feb. 6, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. CT

Evansville: Wednesday, Feb. 7, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. CT

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Following information provided by ORX:

West Alternative 1

West Alternative 1 includes a 4-lane I-69 bridge and retains one US 41 bridge for local traffic. It includes a reconstructed US 60 interchange and new interchanges at Watson Lane and US 41/Veterans Memorial Parkway (north end).

This alternative keeps traffic on the US 41 corridor while maintaining businesses in the area. The Project Team is working with the Henderson Planning Commission regarding the future of the US 41 strip and how to best serve the area. The alignment has been shifted to avoid Eagle Slough.

The preliminary estimated cost is $1.47 billion, and includes bridge maintenance costs for both the I-69 bridge and US 41 bridge and inflation costs.

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West Alternative 2

West Alternative 2 includes a 6-lane I-69 bridge and removes both US 41 bridges from service. It includes a reconstructed US 60 interchange and new interchanges at Watson Lane, Wolf Hills/Stratman Road, Nugent Drive and US 41/Veterans Memorial Parkway (north end).

This alternative keeps traffic on the US 41 corridor, but businesses along the west side of US 41 would be impacted. The alignment has been shifted to avoid Eagle Slough.

The preliminary estimated cost is $1.49 billion, and includes bridge maintenance costs for the I-69 bridge and inflation costs.

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Central Alternative 1

Central Alternative 1 includes a 4-lane I-69 bridge and retains one US 41 bridge for local traffic. It includes new interchanges at US 41 (south end), US 60 and Veterans Memorial Parkway.

This alternative bypasses the US 41 corridor. With through traffic on I-69, the Project Team is working with the Henderson County Planning Commission regarding the future of the US 41 strip and how to best serve the area. The alignment has been shifted to avoid a wetland mitigation site and historic properties at US 60.

The preliminary estimated cost is $1.42 billion, and includes bridge maintenance costs for both the I-69 bridge and US 41 bridge and inflation costs.

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