Construction began today on new Speedway roundabout

Groundbreaking today for new roundabout near 16th and Georgetown Road.
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Construction began today in Speedway on the Main Street roundabout to connect 16th Street and Crawfordsville Road with Main Street.

Studies have concluded that more than 63 percent of total accidents in Speedway occur at this intersection, and in the coming years, the area is projected to experience even more congestion.

Officials believe a roundabout will ease traffic flow and encourage business growth in surrounding areas. And, in addition, help improve air quality and enhance safety and security in the area.

"Many studies show significant safety benefits of modern roundabouts over traditional intersections," said Brandye Hendrickson, Indiana Department of Transportation district deputy commissioner. "The circular design lowers speeds, reduces potential collision points and nearly eliminates the most severe types of crashes."

The Main Street roundabout project is the next step in the multimillion-dollar redevelopment of Speedway's Main Street and Speed Zone area.

"Main Street is poised to be a thriving, downtown district," said Vince Noblet, president of the Speedway Redevelopment Commission. "Directly connecting 16th Street and Crawfordsville Road to Main Street will allow progress to continue and ultimately result in positive growth and investment in the Town of Speedway."

Town Council President Gary Raikes is excited to see the longtime redevelopment plan take shape.

"We are committed to making Speedway an outstanding place to live, work, shop, learn and play," Raikes said. "Continuing the revitalization of Main Street is not only good for our residents but also for our businesses and year-round visitors."

The improvement of traffic and addition of sidewalks along the perimeter will now allow customers to travel safely to local businesses in the area, which in return offers business owners new opportunities for growth.

As part of the project, Georgetown Road will not connect to the roundabout.

The IMS safety committee — which consists of local, state and federal law-enforcement agencies — has determined that because of the close proximity of the grandstands to Georgetown Road, connecting to the roundabout would pose a potential threat to the safety of IMS visitors and the facility.

"We must make bold decisions that will positively impact the track and the town not only now, but 50 years from now," said Doug Boles, president of  IMS. "The changes to the Main Street intersection will allow for the IMS to increase safety for the millions of visitors to the track and the town of Speedway."

The intersection of 16th Street, Georgetown Road and Crawfordsville Road will be closed from 7 p.m. until 5 a.m. July 29-31. Beginning August 11, Georgetown Road will no longer be a through street, serving local traffic only south of 25th Street.

Learn more about the project here.