I-69 - Evansville to Indianapolis
The new I-69 between Evansville and Indianapolis is a key component to the future economic vitality of southwestern Indiana, and will connect an entire region with improved access to jobs, education and healthcare.
In the 1970s, a group of visionaries began dreaming of a "Southwest Indiana Highway" connecting Evansville to Bloomington. In 1991, Congress proposed a "New National Highway System" and the dream took root as part of a new I-69 corridor. Designated as one of six Corridors of the Future, I-69 will ultimately extend from Mexico to Canada, making it a primary north-south artery for the movement of goods and services in the US.
In late 1999, a Tier 1 Environmental Impact Study (EIS) was initiated for the Evansville to Indianapolis portion of I-69. This EIS looked at a wide range of possible highway corridors to link Evansville and Indianapolis. In December of 2003, a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for I-69 was issued recommending Alternative 3C as the preferred corridor for I-69. The Federal Highway Administration selected Alternative 3C for I-69 in its Record of Decision (ROD) dated March 24, 2004. The FEIS and ROD divided the 142-mile corridor into six sections, paving the way for the initiation of Tier 2 studies for I-69.
The Tier 2 Environmental Studies have been completed for Sections 1 through 5. Thanks to the commitment of governors Mitch Daniels and Mike Pence, and funds from the lease of the Indiana Toll Road, I-69 is rapidly moving through construction. Sections 1 through 4 from Evansville to Bloomington are now open to traffic. Mainline construction on Section 5 began in late 2014 and is scheduled for completion in 2018. Section 6, connecting Martinsville to Indianapolis, is in the final stages of its environmental study. A FEIS and ROD for Section 6 is anticipated for the first quarter of 2018.
At the peak of construction in 2012, I-69 was the longest contiguous new terrain interstate construction project in the U.S., putting Indiana in an enviable position to attract new jobs in a competitive global marketplace.