'The Big Squeeze' goes into effect; backups expected on I-65 in S. Ind.

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by Bryan Shaw

WHAS11.com

Posted on September 1, 2014 at 1:52 PM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 2 at 6:29 AM

CLARKSVILLE, Ind. (WHAS11) – Rush hour traffic in Southern Indiana is about to get a little more congested on Interstate 65 from the Kennedy Bridge to Brown's Station Way in Clarksville in what is being called “The Big Squeeze.”

By the time the morning commute starts Tuesday, I-65 south will be reduced from three lanes to two lanes, and Tuesday evening north bound traffic will be reduced from three lanes to two lanes.

“We expect heavy traffic heavy congestion. We have had a good run with traffic so far. Drivers have been very accommodating and patient. With this next major change in traffic we expect it to really change traffic in the interchange,” Andy Barber of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet said.

The lane reduction will take place from the Kennedy Bridge to Brown's Station Way in Clarksville and is not expected to be finished until 2016.

“As we know, work that happens in Southern Indiana can back up into Downtown Louisville. We are urging drivers to think about this while we have the long weekend. Think about how they are going to get to work. Think about what time they are going to arrive, if you can travel during the off peak, it’s always better than traveling during the peak. If you can think of alternate ways to your office that should be something you should consider, too,” Barber said.

The restrictions will take roughly two weeks to get in place. 

Southbound will get be reduced and split.  The northbound traffic will then be moved into the old southbound lane.  This will free up the northbound lanes for new construction and the construction of the new ramps to the bridge. 

Once the northbound lanes are constructed in 2015 all the traffic will be shifted to those new lanes to allow construction on the southbound side.

“Now with the impact that we are having, the Sherman Minton will still be open, the Kennedy Bridge will still be open, and the Clark will still be open, you still have more cross river capacity than what you did when the Sherman Minton was closed three years ago,” Barber said.

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