I-69 ORX team surveying residents and business owners

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The I-69 Ohio River Crossing (I-69 ORX) Project Team is gathering feedback from residents and business owners regarding the preliminary alternatives for a new I-69 bridge and interstate connections.

West Alternative 1, West Alternative 2 and Central Alternative 1 are identified as providing the best opportunity to be financially feasible and address the purpose and need of the project. The purpose and need is to complete the I-69 connection between Indiana and Kentucky, improve long-term cross-river mobility, reduce congestion and delay, and improve safety.

A total of three surveys are available on the project website. Two surveys are for residents and one survey is for business owners.

The Public Survey will help the Project Team better understand how drivers use the existing US 41 bridges and how their travel and the community may be affected by the project. Questions include how often residents travel the US 41 bridges, how they may be impacted by tolling and how low-income or minority populations may be affected by tolling.

The Public Survey was also mailed to nearly 4,500 homes for ease of access. Responses will be collected through March 16.

The recent Open House survey is also available to complete online. Residents are asked their opinions of the preliminary alternatives, suggestions for improving the alternatives and their preferences for the future of the US 41 bridges. The survey was available at open houses earlier this month in Henderson and Evansville. Feedback is being collected through February 28.

Hundreds of business owners are being asked for their opinions on the project. Postcards were recently mailed to more than 800 businesses in and near the project area, including businesses along the US 41 strip, in downtown Henderson and in Evansville.

The postcard directs business owners and local managers to complete the Business Survey online. The voluntary survey will help the Project Team better understand potential impacts to businesses. Questions center on business information, customer base, access to the business and potential effects of the project. Feedback is being collected through February 28.

The information being gathered by all three surveys will help in the refinement and evaluation of the preliminary alternatives. Traffic modeling, field work and engineering analyses also continue. A preferred alternative is expected to be identified and the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) published by this fall. After the DEIS is published, public hearings will be held in both Evansville and Henderson.

The Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) are expected by fall 2019. The ROD allows the states, with the help of available federal funds, to move forward with design, land purchases and construction.

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