Let's get action on a SR 256
connector to I-65
Tuesday, March 25, 2014 11:00 AM
The 2014 session of the Indiana General Assembly has ended after the usual sprint to the finish line produced a variety of new legislation.
Road funding is one area that many deemed a success. But we still feel cheated.
Up to $400 million for major highway construction projects could be released by year's end, with about $200 million of that guaranteed.
At Saturday's Third House session in Madison, the discussion of creating a connector road from Madison to I-65 over State Road 256 again came up.
State Rep. Terry Goodin said a connector would create economic opportunity for Jefferson County, but that funding now only exists from I-65 to State Road 3.
Funding, Goodin said, would need to be raised to bring the wider road east to Madison.
"There is no more important economic issue in Jefferson County than Highway 256," Goodin said.
It's also a safety issue. A trip on 256 to Austin to connect with I-65 can be treacherous - especially in the winter.
State Rep. Jim Lucas said he supported the road expansion, but that the state needs to take care of existing roads before expanding.
"We don't want to bite off more than we can chew," Lucas said.
We appreciate that sentiment, but a connector road isn't a new idea. Goodin, Lucas and State Rep. Randy Frye, who also represents part of Jefferson County, need to muster support in Indianapolis to get this venture on track.
We see state money being spent on projects far less critical.