Division Road.jpg

Looking west from Division Road at the intersection with U.S. 31 in Tipton County on April 29, 2020.

TIPTON – The Indiana Department of Transportation is holding a public hearing on the preliminary design plans to construct an overpass on U.S. 31 over the Norfolk Southern railroad line.

The hearing will be held 6 p.m. Wednesday in the CW Mount Community Center & Banquet Facility, 341 W. Jefferson St., Tipton.

Prior to the official public hearing, the meeting room will be open for a project open house from from 5-6 p.m. Following the public hearing, a second project open house will occur from 6:30-7 p.m.

INDOT is proposing to construct a single span twin structures carrying U.S. 31 over 100 South and the existing Norfolk Southern Railroad. The project limits are approximately 5,940 feet in length. The project begins 1,850 feet south of the Norfolk Southern Railroad and extends 4,120 feet north of the Norfolk Southern Railroad (to compensate for poor soil conditions).

The proposed structures will be single span twin bridges with a 44.5 foot out-to-out coping width and 41.58 foot clear roadway. The bridge cross section consists of two 12-foot travel lanes, and varying-width shoulders with a minimum width of 5.67 feet to the inside and 11.67 feet to the outside.

The structures will provide a 23-foot minimum vertical clearance over the railroad tracks and a 14.5 foot minimum vertical clearance over 100 South.

Additional details will be presented during the public hearing and also made available via the INDOT website.

INDOT said the purpose of this project is to improve the flow of traffic on U.S. 31 across the Norfolk Southern Railroad, reduce traffic disruptions for those traveling on U.S 31 and to reduce vehicle collisions.

The need for this project stems from the frequency of traffic disruptions, number of individuals impacted daily by the train crossing and a history of vehicle collisions.

Approximately seven trains utilize the existing rail facilities each day crossing this segment of U.S. 31. The train crossing stops traffic flow increasing the potential for vehicle collisions and results in delayed travel times.

The purpose of the public hearing is to offer all interested persons an opportunity to comment on the environmental document and the preliminary design plans for the US 31 over the Norfolk Southern Railroad Grade Separation Project. This project is being developed using federal and state funds.

The public hearing will adhere to State of Indiana Department of Health (ISDH) health and safety guidelines including face coverings, implementing social distancing practices and providing hand sanitizer. Attendees are encouraged to adhere to ISDH guidelines and safety protocols.

Carson Gerber can be reached at 765-854-6739, carson.gerber@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter @carsongerber1.

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Carson Gerber is a reporter for the Kokomo Tribune and can be reached at 765-854-6739, carson.gerber@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter @carsongerber1.

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