Alternatives Screening Report

ALTERNATIVES SCREENING REPORT

Alternatives screening is the process used to narrow potential alternatives for evaluation in the environmental study. The goal of the Alternatives Screening Report is to present the project’s range of alternatives considered, discuss the results of the screening analysis, and identify the preliminary preferred alternative to be carried forward for further development and evaluation in the Environmental Assessment (EA). Alternatives must first meet the project’s purpose and need, and they are then evaluated for environmental impacts.

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INDOT has determined that Alternative 4c would provide the best balance of meeting safety and mobility needs while minimizing or potentially eliminating the use of retaining walls along the legs of the interchange. Click here to learn more about Alternative 4c

FACTORS CONSIDERED IN THE SCREENING PROCESS

FIVE ALTERNATIVES EVALUATED IN THE SCREENING REPORT

  • No-Build – Although a No-Build Alternative does not meet the purpose and need for the project, it must be included as a project alternative in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
  • Transportation System Management (TSM) – This alternative considers transportation improvements through policies, strategies and technologies to improve freeway performance. It also includes strategies to divert traffic away from the project area.
  • Replace Bridges and Pavement In-Kind – Existing bridges and pavement would be rehabilitated or replaced at their current locations, bringing them to current design standards where feasible without changing the alignment and grade of roadways within the interchange.
  • Efficient Interchange Reconstruction – This alternative includes three options to address the most severe safety problems in the project area. Highways and ramps would be realigned to provide more efficient and direct connections and smoother curves. Existing bridges and pavement are replaced. There are no additional through lanes, and some existing movements may be removed.
  • Full Interchange Reconstruction – Highways and ramps would be realigned to improve safety and operations. Existing bridges and pavement would be replaced and additional through lanes would be added. All existing movements would be maintained.

SCREENING SUMMARY

Build alternatives must satisfy the project purpose and need to be carried forward in the EA.

  • Alternative 1 (No-Build) would not meet purpose and need, but will be carried forward in the EA as a baseline for comparative evaluation against the build alternatives.
  • Alternative 2 will not be carried forward since no TSM actions were identified that would meet the project purpose and need.
  • Alternative 3 would satisfy needs related to the condition of pavement and bridges, but it will not be carried into the EA since it would cost nearly as much as Alternatives 4 and 5, and would not meet the project purpose and needs related to safety and operations.
  • The only alternatives that meet the project purpose and need are Alternatives 4 and 5.
    • Alternative 4 has three options that differ in access to the Meridian/Pennsylvania Street exit ramp and the Meridian/Delaware Street entrance ramp on the west leg of the interchange.
    • Alternative 5 differs from Alternative 4 by providing added through lanes
INDOT has determined that among the alternatives that meet the project purpose and need, Alternative 4c would provide the best balance of meeting safety and mobility needs while minimizing or potentially eliminating the use of retaining walls along the legs of the interchange. Subject to input from agencies, advisory committees, and the public during the comment period of this screening report, INDOT has determined that Alternative 4c will be the preliminary preferred alternative to be analyzed in detail in the EA.