Study could pave the way for a new highway in Southwestern Indiana


JASPER, Ind. (WEHT) – Two years of work is coming to Spencer and Dubois county and the proposal could pave a way for one new road cutting across cities and farms.

“We’ve got to be connected to thrive,” said Jasper Mayor, Dean Vonderheide.

He and other local stakeholders kicked off a study Monday which will last until 2021. It aims to best plan the proposed route from Owensboro to I-69 somewhere in Southwestern Indiana.

State Highway 231 is the main road running north and south through Dubois County, but Vonderheide says it is fading fast.

“It is anticipated that area will operate at a service level of ‘F’ by the year 2030.”

That “F” is not friendly.

Huntingburg Mayor, Denny Spinner joins the project team in wanting a better connection to the interstate.

“It will increase the opportunity for travel into our cities,” Spinner said.

The Mid-State Corridor is planned to wrap around Huntingburg and Jasper and branch off in some direction. Whether it goes east or west, that’s going to be considered in the study.

There are many questions unanswered, but a $7 million study over the next 2 years will likely pave the way to a solid design. The project team is planning meetings for early August and they want your input.

“You represent the future for our kids and our grandkids,” said Tom Hunter, a developer in Spencer County.

Dubois County Council President, Jerry Hunefeld believes this is the chance the region has been waiting for. An improved interstate connection has the chance to grow the workforce and diversify business.

Project leaders do not yet have an estimate for the entire construction job. Whatever the cost, local leaders expect to embrace it.

“The opportunity is here,” Hunefeld said. “It is now our chance to open the door.”

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This story was originally published on July 8, 2019

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