Gov. Mike Pence celebrated the opening of the new U.S. 31 Hamilton County freeway with Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard, Westfield Mayor Andy Cook, U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks and Indiana Dept. of Transportation Commissioner Brandye Hendrickson as they joined project personnel, designers and contractors to commend five years of ambitious construction resulting in free-flowing traffic on U.S. 31 in Hamilton County.
“Hamilton County has seen significant growth in recent years and ensuring our infrastructure keeps pace with this part of the state is essential,” Pence said. “The unprecedented progress on the new U.S. 31 in Hamilton County and points north is a tribute to the vision of leaders across Indiana. Hoosiers can be confident that my administration will continue to build on these significant investments and ensure that Indiana remains the Crossroads of America.”
Last week, northbound and southbound U.S. 31 traffic was shifted onto new bridges over 106th and 116th streets, opening the freeway to three lanes in each direction and effectively removing the final two traffic signals from U.S. 31 through Carmel. All ramps at the I-465 and U.S. 31 interchange, including the new free-flowing ramps from I-465 to northbound U.S. 31, are anticipated to be open to traffic and in their final configurations next week.
“The opening of the new U.S. 31 in Hamilton County is the culmination of a decades-long effort to build a safer, more efficient connection between Indianapolis and South Bend that would be a catalyst for economic development along the entire corridor,” Brooks said. “This highway now moves at the speed of commerce. By completing U.S. 31 earlier than originally planned, Governor Pence and the leadership in Hamilton County are sending a strong message that this corridor, and all of Central Indiana is truly – open for business.”
“U.S. 31 has always been a vital corridor for Carmel and we were happy to support the upgrade to this highway, not just for our benefit but for the benefit of the State of Indiana,” Brainard said. “We applaud INDOT for working with local communities throughout the process of improving traffic flow through Carmel and all of Hamilton County. It’s good to see the substantial completion of the highway project and we look forward to next spring when the remaining related projects will be completed.”