Governor Mike Pence late Wednesday morning joined state and local leaders to open Interstate 69 Section 4 in Greene and Monroe counties.
Following yesterday’s ceremony, the governor led a caravan to open the new 27 miles between U.S. 231 near Naval Support Activity Crane and State Road 37 south of Bloomington.
Pence said hoosiers know that roads mean jobs, and the new interstate section is a key component to the economic vitality and development of southwest Indiana. Pence said finishing what’s been started with I-69 will connect an entire region of the state with improved access to jobs, education and healthcare.
Purdue University researchers tracked State Road 45 travel times within the past month and predict that the new I-69 section opening today will save commuters, on average, 18 minutes of travel-time.
Purdue performed a similar study before the first I-69 sections opened in 2012 and estimated a 38-minute travel-time savings between Evansville and Crane.
The new I-69 section has three new exits at State Road 45, State Road 445 and State Road 37. Teardrop-shaped roundabouts are used to control State Road 445 traffic at the I-69 Exit 104 ramps near the Greene-Monroe county line.
Although Section 4 is now open to traffic, I-69 construction continues. Inspections and punch-list items will require occasional lane closures into 2016 between Crane and Bloomington.
Traffic should expect delays at traffic shifts and lane closures as State Road 37 is upgraded to I-69 from Bloomington to Martinsville.