86th Street bridge closes April 18, 2005

Rehabilitation of the 86th Street bridge over Eagle Creek will begin on April 18 according to Rick Brost, senior project engineer for the Indianapolis Department of Public Works. On that date, the bridge will be closed to traffic until work is completed sometime from mid-September to mid-October.

Brost briefed attendees about the project at a public information meeting held April 5 at the Pike Township Government Center. He was joined by Steve Robertson, a superintendent with Gohmann Asphalt & Construction Company, and Margie Smith-Simmons, DPW’s public information officer. Three employees of the engineering firm involved with the project were also present.

Throughout the duration of the project, the official detour route will use Lafayette Road, 71st Street and Zionsville Road. Signs and barricades will be placed on 86th Street at Zionsville Road and at Lafayette Road.

Several residents expressed concern about increased traffic on unofficial detour routes, including Conarroe Road, 79th Street and Moore Road. Smith-Simmons said she would contact the Marion County Sheriff’s Department about increasing patrols in those areas, but could not guarantee enhanced enforcement.

Brost and Robertson said that the entire concrete bridge deck would be removed and replaced, and that new railings will be of a style that allows motorists to enjoy a view of the creek. New guard rails will be installed at the ends of the bridge, and rip-rap will be placed on the embankments to allow runoff and control erosion. The existing arched piers, which are structurally sound, will be retained and repaired.

Responding to a question from the audience, Smith-Simmons said that there are no plans to widen 86th Street or the bridge through at least 2020.

While the official completion date of the project is slated to be mid-October, Robertson said he planned to have the bridge open in mid-September.

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About Ross Reller

I am pleased you have expressed interest in learning more about the historic Traders Point area in Indianapolis, Indiana. From 1980 to 1982 I was employed in the PR department at Conner Prairie Museum in Hamilton County. There I learned about William Conner, an important figure in Indiana's pioneer days. A decade later I became interested in the history of the Traders Point area and was surprised to learn that William Conner had been the first land owner in the area. In 1823 he acquired, through the Federal land office in Brookville, a patent for an 80 acre tract carved by Eagle Creek and an Indian trail that was about to be named the first toll roadway through the township (Lafayette Road). Thirty years later a village took shape within this tract. A grain mill on the creek, houses, churches, stores, restaurants, and two gas stations would take shape here in the creek valley hamlet of Traders Point. By 1962 all improvements (except a farmer's co-op) had been removed by the Indianapolis Flood Control Board to make way for Interstate 65 and a new reservoir. This blog is dedicated to preserving evidence of this historic area but I will occasionally use it to discuss related topics. To activate this follow, simply click the confirm button below. If you don't want to follow, ignore this message and we'll never bother you again. I am also a member of the Old Pleasant Hill Cemetery, a non profit association still selling burial plots for those who would like to spend all eternity in Traders Point, and I am an officer in the Pike Township Historical Society and the Traders Point Association of Neighborhoods.
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