The North Split interchange is scheduled to reopen by the end of 2022, according to a report from the Indiana Department of Transportation. Landscaping, aesthetics and local street work on the project involving both Interstates 65 and 70 will continue into spring 2023.
The North Split landscaping design will include the use of native, low-maintenance plants to soften urban elements and provide a diverse palette of plant species, including native grasses, small shrubs, large deciduous shrubs, ornamental trees, and shade trees.
The project will also result in improved lighting, visibility and pedestrian safety at bridge underpasses, state highway officials added.,
INDOT issued the progress update on the North Split reconstruction project a year after the interchange’s full closure. Since May 15, 2021, North Split construction crews have:
- Successfully demolished 38 of 51 bridges in need of repair.
- Placed 217 of 390 precast concrete beams, with the largest weighing approximately 250,000 pounds.
- Reconstructed 4 bridges and 1 ramp, which are currently in use .
- Used approximately 34,000 cubic yards of structural concrete.
- Moved over 560,000 cubic yards of the 1 million total cubic yards of earthwork.
The North Split is the busiest interchange in central Indiana, the INDOT report indicated. After 50 years of service, the North Split’s deteriorating condition made reconstruction necessary to rehabilitate and improve the existing interstate facilities, officials said. A more efficient and compact redesign of the interchange eliminates merging and weaving conditions that contribute to high crash rates and congestion.
The state’s original plans for the Downtown interstate project were altered after vociferous opposition from the Rethink 65/70 Coalition, a grassroots group of Downtown stakeholders. Those changes, however, did not go as far as the Coalition sought.
Once North Split reconstruction is complete, project area improvements will include:
- 223 new lighting elements, including 12 high-mast tower lights, 176 underpass and monument lights at bridges, and 33 conventional roadway light structures.
- Approximately 12,100 linear feet of new sidewalks/trails.
- More than 4,500 trees.
- More than 5,000 shrubs.
For up-to-date project information, visit northsplit.com or text “NORTHSPLIT” to 468311. Follow the North Split project’s progress on social media at:
PHOTO ABOVE: Much bridgework remains to be down over East New York Street between Lockerbie Square and Holy Cross.