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Work on State ready for Phase 2

September 2, 2018

Phase 2 of Fort Wayne’s State Boulevard reconstruction project is moving forward with approval of a $989,955 professional services agreement with American Structurepoint for construction inspection.

“This project has been on the books for a long time and we are going to be bidding this project here in February of 2019, but in preparation we have to get on-board construction inspection to meet INDOT requirements,” City Engineer Patrick Zaharako said. 

Work started on the realignment in April. Phase 1 required lane restrictions between Clinton Street and Spy Run Avenue. The realignment will straighten curves along State Boulevard between Cass Street and Spy Run Avenue. 

Phase 2, which will begin next year, will focus on the area between Clinton and Cass streets. Specifically, crews will replace a 90-year-old bridge over Spy Run Creek, as well as realign and widen the roadway. There are also plans for new turn lanes and protected sidewalks on both sides of State.

The project is expected to be finished in 2020.

Reader questions

Q: My question concerns the lack of any sound barriers on Interstate 469 along the east side of Fort Wayne around residential areas, i.e. Wheelock Road. It seems like every time we drive on the west side of the city, they have added even more barriers along I-469 and I-69. : Melodye P. 

A: There probably won’t be any new sound barriers placed on I-469 on the east side of the city. According to INDOT spokeswoman Nichole Hacha-Thomas, sound barriers are added when the road is built.

“Noise barriers require long, uninterrupted segments to be effective,” an INDOT pamphlet about noise barriers states. “As such, if there are existing roadway access points and/or driveways, it is not feasible to construct effective noise barriers.” 

Since there probably aren’t any driveways connecting directly to I-469, the brochure notes that INDOT takes into account topography, drainage, safety, barrier height, utilities and access and maintenance needs when considering whether to install noise barriers.

You can find the brochure at https://bit.ly/2PkeSrd.

Q: What is the proper etiquette for funeral processions on busy roads? I saw several cars going west on West Jefferson/U.S. 24 pull over at Covington Road for a large funeral procession going east. Most of the vehicles pulled over to the side, but one was stopped in the middle of the right lane causing traffic to back up into the intersection. : Anonymous

A: In Indiana, it’s illegal to break up a funeral procession. That is, drivers can’t cut into or through one, Fort Wayne Police Sgt. Jim Seay said.

However, there are no laws that require drivers to pull over to allow a procession to pass. Seay said that’s just a sign of respect some drivers show when they see a funeral procession. 

Road Sage is a monthly column. Dave Gong, The Journal Gazette’s local government reporter, provides updates on public works projects in the Fort Wayne area and answers selected questions from readers. Submit a question by emailing roadsage@jg.net or tweeting @JGRoadSage.