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Public Meeting Last Thursday in Greene County to Discuss I-69

Last Thursday, there was a meeting in Greene County to discuss the environmental impact of the I-69 extension.

The Indiana Department of Transportation hosted the public meeting, focusing specifically on a 27-mile stretch between Bloomington and the Crane Naval Surface Warfare Center. The area, known as Section Four, runs northeast from US 231 near Crane to State Road 37 just south of Bloomington.

Transportation department spokesperson Will Wingfield says a 2000 foot wide corridor has been identified for the extension. Wingfield says though that the exact route of the extension isn’t set in stone.

After gathering public input, INDOT will work to fine tune the exact route. Both the Hoosier Environmental Council and Citizens for Appropriate Rural Roads participated in the public hearing to highlight funding, environmental, and accountability problems that plague the I-69 project.

The senior policy adviser for the Hoosier Environmental Council says a study of Section Four of the project shows it would result in broad scale environmental damage.

INDOT will submit a final environmental impact statement to the federal highway administration later this year. Once approved, federal funds will be available to complete the project. The state’s goal is to open the entire expansion from Indianapolis to Evansville by 2014.

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