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The proposed project will include improvements to the existing roadway, including new pavement, curb and gutter, sidewalks, storm sewers, roadway lighting, and new traffic signals.
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The City of Hammond will hold a Public Meeting on Tuesday, May 7, 2013. Two presentations will be offered. The first presentation will be held at City Hall, 5925 Calumet Avenue, Hammond, Indiana 46320, with a formal presentation at 12:30 p.m. in the City Council Chambers. The second presentation will be in the auditorium of Washington Irving Middle School located 4727 Pine Avenue, Hammond, Indiana 46327 with a formal presentation at 6:00 p.m. An open house will follow each of the presentations. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the project purpose and need, alternatives being investigated, and afford an opportunity for public participation and allow discussion of any views and comments the public may have in relation to the proposed project. Concept plans of the proposed project will be on display for public review. City of Hammond and design consultants will be available during the meeting to discuss the project.
The City of Hammond, Indiana, is developing a federal-aid project to reconstruct and widen Chicago Street (formerly known as State Route (SR) 312) through Hammond from South Brainard Avenue, on the Indiana border with Illinois, to White Oak Avenue, at the eastern limits of the City of Hammond. The entire length of the proposed project is approximately 2.1 miles. Former SR 312 coincides with three separate streets as it traverses the project study area, including Gostlin Street, Sheffield Avenue, and Chicago Street. The project limits, from west to east, begin at the intersection of Gostlin Street and South Brainard Avenue and continue east along Gostlin Street to the intersection of Gostlin Street and Sheffield Avenue, where the project study area continues south along Sheffield Avenue to the intersection of Sheffield Avenue and Chicago Street. At this intersection, the project study area turns east along Chicago Street to the study area’s eastern terminus at the intersection of Chicago Street and White Oak Avenue.
The western end of the proposed project corridor is currently a two-lane roadway. Travelling east along the corridor, the roadway remains two lanes until the intersection of Gostlin Street and Sheffield Avenue, where a left-turn lane is provided for both eastbound and westbound traffic. Turning south, Sheffield Avenue is a two-lane facility. No left-turn lane is provided at the intersection of Sheffield Avenue and Chicago Street. Turning east onto Chicago Street from Sheffield Avenue, Chicago Street is a two-lane facility with striped on-street parking along both sides of the roadway up to its intersection with Calumet Avenue, where both left- and right-turn lanes are provided for eastbound and westbound traffic. East of Calumet Avenue, Chicago Street becomes a four-lane roadway with two eastbound and two westbound travel lanes and striped on-street parking along both sides of the roadway through to the end of the project study area. Left-turn lanes are provided for both eastbound and westbound traffic at the intersection of Chicago Street and Columbia Avenue.
The proposed project will include improvements to the existing roadway, including new pavement, curb and gutter, sidewalks, storm sewers, roadway lighting, and new traffic signals. Several alternatives are currently being evaluated. The current proposed project includes realignment of Gostlin Street between the Indiana/Illinois state line and Sheffield Avenue, leaving the current alignment of Gostlin Street as a local access road between Clark Avenue and Wabash Avenue. The intersection of Sheffield Avenue and Gostlin Street will be shifted to the southwest and become a roundabout. Sheffield Avenue will be slightly realigned, and the intersection of Sheffield Avenue and Chicago Street will be realigned to eliminate the 90 degree turn. The intersection of Hohman Avenue and Chicago Street will also become a roundabout. Additionally, Chicago Street between Hohman Avenue and Torrence Avenue will be widened to accommodate these improvements. Intersection improvements are also proposed at Johnson Avenue, Pine Avenue, and Columbia Avenue.
This project is being proposed to improve safety, reduce congestion, repair deteriorated infrastructure, and maintain the east-west travel corridor for truck traffic. It is anticipated that new permanent right-of-way will be acquired from residential, commercial, park, and industrial properties.
The proposed project is anticipated to be constructed in two phases with Phase I extending from Brainard Avenue to Calumet Avenue and Phase II extending from Calumet Avenue to White Oak Avenue. It is anticipated that Phase I will be let in July 2015 with Phase II being let in September 2016. Estimated construction costs as of September 2011 were $16 million with 80 percent of this total being provided by federal funding and 20 percent coming from local funding. Maintenance of traffic during construction will be coordinated with the Indiana Department of Transportation, the Illinois Department of Transportation, the City of East Chicago, and the City of Hammond.
Initial investigations, including an assessment of potential hazardous materials sites, historic resources, land use, and ecological resources have been completed. Several sites along the project corridor contain hazardous materials and will be further investigated. One property, the Polish Army Veterans’ Post No. 40 located at 241 Gostlin Street, was recommended as eligible for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places under Criterion A for its association with the ethnic and military heritage of the Hammond Polish community. Additionally, the project traverses Census Tracts containing both low income and minority populations identified as meeting the criteria for an Environmental Justice population. An Environmental Assessment is being prepared for this project and will be completed in 2013.
This notice is published in compliance with Title 23, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 771.111(h) entitled “Early Coordination, Public Involvement and Project Development,” and the Indiana Public Involvement Manual, approved by the Federal Highway Administration, US Department of Transportation, on August 16, 2012.
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