Alternatives

Along with the “No-Build” and previous studied improvement alternatives, several new alternatives / combinations will be discussed. Each of these alternatives will proceed through the study process.  Some will be dismissed early in the process for not adequately addressing the study’s purpose and need.  Others will proceed through the entire study process and will eventually be assessed for how well they meet the five tests of feasibility identified in the introduction.

Alternative No. 1

“No-Build” Alternative: Existing plus programmed / committed improvements.

The No-Build alternative, as illustrated in Alternative Map No. 1 consists of improvements that are already planned and programmed in INDOT’s transportation project development program.  This list of projects primarily consists of intersection and signal improvements, pavement rehabilitation, and bridge rehabilitation.  These improvements are scheduled to take place over the next five years.  The “No Build” aspect to this scenario relates to the fact that no new improvements would emerge from this study as a recommendation to proceed through INDOT’s project development process.

Alternative No. 2

Improved 2-Lane Highway from Noblesville to Marion on (or near) existing alignment.

This alternative would consist of roadway and intersection improvements to the existing SR 37, and is illustrated in Alternative Map No. 2.  SR 37 would remain a two-lane highway for the entire corridor.  However, spot improvements such as passing lanes, left-turn lanes, and intersection improvements, would be proposed that address roadway deficiencies and result in an overall better two-lane facility than the existing SR 37.  Additionally, a part of the evaluation process for this alternative will explore the potential for purchasing limited access right-of-way for future corridor widening / expansion.

Alternative No. 3

4-Lane Expressway (non-freeway) from Noblesville to Marion.

3a.  Relocation at Strawtown

3b.  Relocation at Elwood

3c.  Relocation at Strawtown (3a) and Elwood (3b)

This alternative would improve SR 37 to a four-lane divided highway with partial access control, using limited access right-of-way with direct access limited to at-grade intersections with select public roads, thus creating an expressway (non-freeway) type facility.  Alignment relocations near Strawtown and Elwood will also be evaluated for this alternative.  Alternative 3 is illustrated in Alternative Map No. 3. 

Alternative No. 4

4-Lane Freeway from Noblesville to Marion.  

4a.  Relocation at Strawtown

4b.  Relocation at Elwood

4c.  Relocation at Strawtown (5a) and Elwood (5b)

This alternative would entail improving SR 37 to a limited-access, fully controlled four-lane freeway, as illustrated in Alternative Map No. 4.  Access to the freeway would be limited to interchanges.  All other crossroads having existing intersections with SR 37 will be terminated or provided simple grade separations (bridge over or under SR 37).  The highway would follow the existing alignment where possible, but the proposed improvements may require relocations in the vicinity of Strawtown and Elwood.

Alternative No. 5

4-Lane Divided Expressway (non-freeway) to Elwood, Improved 2-Lane Highway from Elwood to Marion

5a.  Relocation at Strawtown

5b.  Relocation at Elwood

5c.  Relocation at Strawtown (5a) and Elwood (5b)

Alternative 5, as illustrated in Alternative Map No. 5, is a variation of Alternative 3 in that it involves upgrading SR 37 to a 4-Lane divided Expressway (non-freeway) between Noblesville and Elwood.  However, Alternative 5 differs from Alternative 3 between Elwood and Marion, as it consists of an improved two-lane highway, similar to Alternative 2. Similarly to Alternative 2, a part of the evaluation process for the 2-Lane portion of this alternative will explore the potential for purchasing limited access right-of-way for future corridor widening / expansion. 

Alternative No. 6

4-Lane Divided Expressway (non-freeway) to 213, “No-Build” north to Marion.

This alternative is a hybrid of Alternatives 1 and 3, and is illustrated Alternative Map No. 6.  The existing four-lane expressway (non-freeway) would be extended from Noblesville to SR 213.  From Route 213 to Marion, this alternative would consist of roadway and intersection improvements that are already planned or programmed, the same as the “No Build” alternative.

Alternative No. 7

SR 37 Relocation from SR 13 south to I-69

This alternative was suggested by the Stakeholders Committee at a meeting on July 24, 2001, and would involve improving the existing two-lanes of SR 13 southward from the south junction of SR 37 and SR 13 as shown in Alternative Map No. 7.  SR 13 would become the new route for SR 37, being realigned around the west side of Lapel.  It would eventually join the existing SR 13 alignment just north of I-69.  This could serve to divert traffic from “Old” SR 37, particularly between Noblesville and I-69.  This alternative could be utilized in conjunction with several of the other alternatives, primarily those with a four-lane option between Elwood and Noblesville.  The recommended improvements from the Indianapolis MPO (CONNECTIONS Study) will play a large role in the evaluation of this alternative.  Any proposed improvement between I-69 and Noblesville from the CONNECTIONS study will be modeled as a part of the existing facility in the evaluation of this alternative.

 

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SR 37 Environmental Assessment / Corridor Study

from Noblesville to Marion