Road improvements begin along 126th St.
This week, the City of Carmel will began road improvements on 126th Street between Range Line Road and Keystone Parkway, leading to some closures and traffic slowdowns.
The end result will be a new median that creates a two-lane boulevard on 126th Street.
Construction is expected to continue until spring 2017.
The project will include adding multi-use paths and improvements to storm water drainage along 126th Street. The city began tree-clearing and erosion-control measures on Aug. 1. At some point, traffic will only be maintained westbound for the remainder of the project.
Utilities will be relocated underground and eight-foot multi-use paths will be installed on both the north and south sides of 126th Street. Along the way, curbs, gutters and storm water pipes will be installed.
In January, the Carmel City Council voted to remove a long-debated stop sign at 126th Street and Auman Drive. Proponents of the stop sign argued that traffic was too fast on this road and affected pedestrian safety. Plus, residents had difficulty turning onto the road, they said.
The stop sign was removed when three councilors who voted to keep the stop sign lost their bids for re-election and were replaced by councilors who supported its removal.
Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard said high speeds could be a concern, but several improvements would take place to improve safety and traffic flow. Brainard opposed widening the road, which was suggested by some, because it can be costly and would require buying up nearby residents’ yards and/or eliminating multi-use paths. The city will instead put a center median on the road, which will prevent unsafe turns, head-on collisions and also reduce speed by narrowing the road.
According to the U.S. Dept. of Transportation, center medians also reduce pedestrian crashes by 46 percent because pedestrians have a safer way to cross the road.
Brainard also has said some roundabouts in the works will slow motorist speeds. One key roundabout will be at 126th Street and Kinzer Avenue, and that roundabout will be shifted to the south from the center line. This roundabout will have a stub street heading south for an anticipated future connection to Carmel Drive. It’s also anticipated that Range Line Road and City Center Drive – which turns into 126th Street – could see a roundabout replace the current stop-sign intersection. That roundabout was in the plans of Carmel’s city engineer and was included in more than $200 million in bonds for infrastructure improvements.
For the 126th Street project, motorists are advised to use detours on Main Street and 116th Street for eastbound traffic. Keystone Parkway and Guilford Avenue will be the connectors to get vehicles to either eastbound detour rout
Carmel Drive and Range Line Road roundabout is scheduled to begin Monday, August 15, 2016. The project will include utility relocation, curbs and sidewalks.
The intersection will be closed until approximately Saturday, November 19, 2016. Access to local businesses in the area will remain open throughout the duration of the project.
- Carmel Drive – Westbound traffic will be routed north on Keystone Parkway, west on Main Street, south on Guilford and resume travel west on Carmel Drive. Eastbound Carmel Drive traffic will be routed south on Guilford to 116th Street to then continue east.
- Range Line Road – Southbound Range Line Road traffic will be routed east on Main Street, south on Keystone Parkway and west on 116th Street back to Range Line Road. Northbound Range Line traffic will be routed east on 116th Street, north on Keystone Parkway and west on Main Street back to Range Line Road.