Cost estimate on I-69 rises by $100M

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Indiana officials say the state's plans to extend Interstate 69 between Bloomington and Martinsville could cost taxpayers almost $100 million more than expected.

The Indianapolis Star reports an environmental impact statement shows the 21-mile stretch between Bloomington and Martinsville could cost between $500 million and $546 million. The state estimated the cost last year at between $405 million and $440 million.

INDOT spokesman Will Wingfield said last year's figures stemmed from a 2000 study and attributed the increase to inflation.

State officials need to take or buy 346 acres, including residences, businesses and a church, to complete the section.

It's unclear how the state will fund the work. Most of the $3.8 billion received from the 75-year lease of the Indiana Toll Road has been spent or allocated.

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