Rethink I-69

The Alarming Rise Of Indiana Transportation Funding Dedicated to I-69

Updated and Revised January 2013 – Read a short policy brief or the the full report.


Read the Report

Read news and editorials about I-69:
Star Watch: INDOT official benefited from his and his family’s sales of land along I-69 route
Ethicists question secrecy in I-69 land sales
Pence weighs in on I-69 land dealings
Dan Carpenter: I-69 land deal raises many questions
Indianapolis Star Editorial: Open records on land purchases for state highways
StarWatch investigation: State paid twice what some I-69 land was worth
Vincennes Sun-Commercial Editorial: Highway money could have been better spent
Indy Star: Indiana’s I-69 land deals spur federal review
IBJ: I-69 leg gobbling up state’s road funding

Speak out against continued spending and environmental damage from I-69 — please tell our new Governor to halt further construction now!

At the same time Indiana’s highway revenues are declining and Indiana toll road lease funds are exhausted, the Indiana Department of Transportation continues with plans to build I-69 from Bloomington to Martinsville, as well as continuing construction on the costly and damaging section from Crane to Bloomington.

Section 5 of I-69 covers about 21 miles, generally following the route of SR 37.  It is estimated to cost as much as $546 million — up to $100 million more than earlier estimates.  It will destroy nearly 250 acres of hardwood forest, damage sensitive caves and springs, and displace 150 homes and over 30 businesses.  

Acknowledging the fact that the state’s highway dollars are shrinking, INDOT has announced it will seek private funding to build this part of I-69, including an approach known as “contractor financing.”  Contractor financing was proposed, and later dropped, as a funding strategy for the U.S. 31 upgrade in Hamilton County.

With private financing for I-69 a questionable prospect, the state will have no choice but to keep diverting traditional gas tax funding away from badly-needed road and bridge repairs around the state to pay for building I-69.

To help stop the wasteful spending and environmental destruction from I-69, please contact Governor Mike Pence and ask him to stop I-69 construction at Crane, and reevaluate the future of I-69.

For more information contact Tim Maloney.


Understanding the Issue

In 2004, the Indiana Department of Transportation received approval to build the I-69 extension from Indianapolis to Evansville along the “New-Terrain” route. The New-Terrain route would pave over 4,000 acres of farmland, destroy dozens of family farms, cut down nearly 2,000 acres of forest land, divide several communities, destroy or disturb 650 caves, springs and sinkholes, and pass through the middle of Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge. The result will be a major highway through rural Southern Indiana that costs more than $3 billion and only saves 13 minutes of travel time from Evansville to Indianapolis. An alternative route, following U.S. 41 and I-70, can accomplish the same core goals with less financial and environmental cost to Hoosiers.

Our Position

HEC supports an I-69 route that follows I-70 from Indianapolis to Terre Haute, and U.S. 41 upgraded to interstate level from there to Evansville.  This route can be completed more quickly, and at much less cost, than the state’s preferred route.  It is considered the least environmentally damaging route by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

It is Common Sense I-69.


Learn more about the common-sense alternate route.

Read our February 2011 complaint requesting that the federal court invalidate an Army Corps of Engineers permit for Section 3 of I-69.

Read our Reply Brief in our case challenging the Army Corps of Engineers permit for Section 3 of I-69.

HEC Reply Br Sec 3 — April 2012.

Read our October 2011 complaint requesting that the federal court invalidate an Army Corps of Engineers permit for Section 2 of I-69.

I-69 White Paper- Sept 2010