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Stupid Indiana weather once again delayed a north split ramp closure. Instead of last weekend and the weekend before, the ramp from westbound I-70 to southbound I-65 will close this coming Friday night, February 21st, and reopen Sunday evening, February 23rd. As always, and just like getting a day of sunshine in February, this is a big fat “hopefully,” since the potential always remains for a massive winter storm to bully through and crush our hopes and dreams of a springtime within shouting distance.

The closure was supposed to happen two weekends ago, but then winter turned to spring, and then spring turned into something else, which forced INDOT to call a rain delay. My houseplant died from climate shock. I buried it in the soccer park near the northbound I-65 underpass. Please don’t play soccer there, or you’ll be dribbling all over its grave.

The reason for the maintenance is in no relation to paving, striping, or landscaping, but more of an effort to fix a barrier wall that someone tagged at a high rate of speed last month. Hey, that’s a gnarly corner when ramping out of westbound I-70 to southbound I-65, and even trickier with a little extra slickness. Impact is like a bimonthly thing or something. 

Broken Barrier Wall

(Andy Dufresne would have covered that hole in the wall with a big damn poster.     Photo Credit: INDOT)

So let’s fix the barrier wall! Starting this Friday night and ending next Sunday evening (2/21 – 2/23, as stated), the north split ramp from westbound I-70 to southbound I-65/70 will shut down so crews can make the wall safe and sturdy. Keep in mind, this is the thru-traffic ramp only. The southbound I-65/70 collector ramp – or local ramp to Michigan St., Ohio St., and Fletcher Ave. – will not only remain open, but will act as the posted reroute for westbound I-70 drivers who wish to continue southbound on I-65/70. 

For clarification on the closure, I made a fancy map:

North Split Closure

The southbound collector isn’t exactly the Dan Ryan, meaning there’s not a whole lot of width to the thing (fluctuates between two-and-three lanes, and even one lane sometimes), so if you’re from Greenfield and meeting a hot date in the cell phone lot at the airport, you might want to start out early. Heavy volume or someone getting sideways on the Ohio St. ramp could cost you a few extra minutes, and then some.

The north split is the second most traveled interchange in the state, after all (or the first, depending on who you ask).

Matt Bair is the new voice of Indianapolis traffic, and can be followed on Twitter @WIBCTraffic.. Fans of Facebook can “like” WIBC Traffic for the latest traffic happenings and occasional frivolity. Tips? Call direct at (317) 684-8134 or the 93 WIBC Newsroom at (317) 637-6397.