INDIANAPOLIS — IndyGo workers will block off roads starting Thursday for construction of the new Purple Line, which will connect downtown Indianapolis to Lawrence once complete.
For ten days, 38th Street will be closed in both directions between Fall Creek Parkway and Orchard Avenue. That will roll into the closure of eastbound traffic from Fall Creek to Keystone for 130 days. Detours will be in place for both closures.
“We're looking at some temporary headaches over the next two years, as we do construction for the Purple Line. But that's going to yield a lifetime of happiness when you talk about what this is going to mean for this very vulnerable community,” said IndyGo spokesperson Carrie Black.
Nearby business owners expressed concern with the construction — especially Bashar Hugais, owner of Phyre Smokes on 38th Street and Keystone Avenue.
Hugais just opened his doors on Sunday, and his Thursday Grand Opening celebration coincides with the first day of the road closures.
“Every day I feel like business is increasing, but obviously with road closures, it's slowing us down a bit,” he said. “With construction going on, it's a little tough for people to just stop by, you know?”
Black said the end result will be worth it, especially for residents of the Far Eastside.
“We're talking connecting to jobs, to healthcare, to education,” she said. “When you're talking about bringing a community together, when you're talking about walkability, when you're talking about transit — these things also mean economic development.”
Hugais also sees potential in the familiar shade of construction barriers, even if it’s a headache for now.
“You do see buildings being built all over, you see these cranes, things being built. They have a plan set up for this area,” he said.
Meanwhile, Black said the development will benefit Indianapolis.
“Regardless of where you live in Indianapolis, whether you ride the bus or not, this is great news for our city,” she said.
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