The intersection at U.S. 231 and Veterans Memorial Highway (State Road 240) may be renovated to help reduce traffic congestion and improve substandard turning radii for larger trucks, among other things.
Alterations to the intersection include adding a right turn lane to South U.S. 231 for traffic turning east on S.R. 240, a right turn lane to East S.R. 240 for traffic turning north on U.S. 231, increasing the turning radii for larger trucks and improving sidewalks and existing traffic lights.
The preliminary plan presented by INDOT incorporates constructing a concrete median on U.S. 231. This detail has created apprehension from some elected officials.
Mayor Sue Murray said, "I think constructing a median presents a very real and potentially dangerous safety concern."
Murray is referring to the reduced access emergency vehicles would have to Putnam County Hospital or various senior-housing complexes should a median be built.
Greencastle City Council member Adam Cohen addressed his concerns for small businesses in the area. He says adding the median will create problems for motorists trying to access Mama Nunz and Toppers Steak House.
Construction of the project will require approximately .35 acres of new permanent right-of-way. Two commercial buildings may be displaced due to a potential reduction in parking space.
INDOT ensures traffic will be maintained throughout the construction period. There will be traffic shifts for each phase, barrels and temporary striping and temporary traffic signals at both U.S. 231 and S.R. 240. Construction is anticipated to begin in the summer of 2010. No completion date has been estimated.
Taxpayers will not be affected by the nearly $1.5 million project. It will be a non-locally funded construction endeavor.
Anyone interested in taking a look at the proposed changes to the intersection can pick up an information packet at Greencastle City Hall or Putnam County Public Library.
Clark encouraged all concerned citizens submit a comment to his office. He says all comments, statements or concerns can be forwarded to him by mail at: Indiana Department of Transportation's Public Hearings Office, Room N642, 100 N. Senate Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46204; by phone at 317-232-6601; or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
All comments will be accepted until Feb. 9 and entered into the project file, evaluated by project officials and given full consideration during the decision making process.