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State Road 37 construction may soon affect travel to and from Bloomington


Safety cones and signs line section five of State Road 37 on Aug. 16, 2017. IDS file photo

Lane closures and shifts affecting traffic on State Road 37 in Martinsville, Indiana, started Wednesday and are likely to run through mid-May.

There will be a northbound lane shift and a lower speed limit starting on or after May 3 on the road during IU’s graduation weekend.

The lane shift should not affect traffic in and out of Bloomington for graduation weekend since all lanes will still be open, said Natalie Garrett, spokesperson for the Indiana Department of Transportation. The speed limit for the construction zone is 45 miles per hour.

“Hopefully people will allow for extra time going to and from Bloomington,” she said.

This is one of three traffic changes that will be made in Martinsville in the coming weeks, according to a press release from INDOT.

The work is part of a larger plan to add lanes, connector roads and an overpass. It cannot be put off, Garrett said.

“We are trying to keep on schedule as best we can,” she said.

Those wanting to avoid the traffic changes can use State Road 67 as a detour, Garrett said.

The first of the traffic changes, which started Wednesday, reduces southbound traffic to a single lane for about one mile.

The lane closure begins just south of State Road 252 near IU Health Morgan Hospital. A second lane opens again just south of Grand Valley Boulevard near Martinsville High School. Northbound lanes remain open.

The first phase is expected to be completed by Saturday, Garrett said.

Starting on or after Saturday, a second traffic change will affect both northbound and southbound traffic in the area, reducing both directions to one lane, Garrett said.

INDOT aims to finish the three phases by May 12 as it continues to convert State Road 37 into an interstate. Additional pattern changes can be expected following these three phases, but specific plans are still in the works, Garrett said.

Motorists are urged to drive with caution in the construction zone, according to the press release.

“Our goal is to keep drivers and motorists safe as well as workers safe,” Garrett said.

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