What to expect on the road ahead

For months, nearly every mile of Interstate 65 in Johnson County has been a construction zone.

Commuters have dealt with backups, narrow lanes, closed lanes and figuring out a new traffic pattern when lanes shift.

Winter is approaching, meaning the end of the construction season. But you should still expect to see workers along I-65, even after the snow falls.

In the coming days, the state is wrapping up construction on projects that have been ongoing for months or even years.

Next week, the new interchange at Worthsville Road in Greenwood will open.

The state also has completed a project to add a lane each direction between Southport Road and Main Street in Greenwood, although crews are still finishing some work in that area and just north of there, where they are adding sound barrier walls.

But two other projects couldn’t be completed this year.

South of Franklin, crews have been repaving the interstate and rebuilding bridges. But work on that $21 million project was delayed due to a rainy start to the construction season, meaning it won’t be finished this year.

By the time crews stop work, three of four lanes should be fixed and paved. A new bridge will have been finished over the Big Blue River, and bridges over Sugar Creek and Amity Ditch will have been repaired, according to a news release from the Indiana Department of Transportation. As of this week, crews were finishing work on two of the bridges, the release said.

The goal, depending on the weather, is to be able to patch the southbound right lane and pave at least part of it.

But commuters should expect that at least part of that lane between Franklin and Edinburgh won’t be finished this year.

They should also expect to continue seeing construction crews south of Greenwood.

Work has started on the multimillion-dollar project to add a lane to the interstate in each direction between Main Street in Greenwood and State Road 44 in Franklin. The state had not planned to finish that project this year.

That means crews will work on what they can throughout the winter, including to bridges along that section of I-65, said Harry Maginity, INDOT spokesman.

Currently, crews are working on rebuilding the bridge over Main Street in Greenwood, and that work can continue into the winter, state officials have said.

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Annie Goeller is managing editor of the Daily Journal. She can be reached at agoeller@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2718.