Downtown I-65/I-70 is wearing out. We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to start over—and revitalize the state’s biggest economic engine.

Let’s Rebuild It Right.

Our Opportunity

The I-65/I-70 inner loop in downtown Indianapolis is nearing the end of its lifespan. It must be rebuilt from the ground up. This presents us with an enormous opportunity to rethink and transform the downtown interstate paths that cut through the state’s largest economic engine—its capital city.

The decisions we make in the next year will affect our region for the next century. We need to understand the full implications before choosing a plan. So we’re calling for a thorough, independent study that includes economic and community impact of all our reconstruction options. We can’t afford to get this wrong. 

A Side-by-Side Comparison

Slide to Reveal
Existing Interstate

This is the downtown I-65/I-70 loop as it exists today.

INDOT Direction

INDOT’s proposed direction would widen the lanes that cut through downtown.

Slide to Reveal
Existing Interstate

Currently, grass slopes around the interstate provide a partial buffer for nearby homes and businesses.

INDOT Direction

INDOT’s proposed direction would replace these green spaces with massive walls.

Slide to Reveal
Existing Interstate

The existing embankments help reduce some of the noise and pollution caused by interstate traffic.

INDOT Direction

The INDOT walls wouldn’t offer the same buffer and would further divide downtown Indianapolis.

“Our vision is to take Indiana to the next level by improving transportation and quality of life.”

Marsh Davis,
Indiana Landmarks
Rethink 65/70

Coalition Members

Why 65/70 Matters

This is about more than transportation. The reconstruction of I-65/I-70 will reshape the core of our state, affecting economic development, housing and public health. This project has the potential to:

Pump adrenaline into the state’s main economic engine.
Revitalizing downtown areas will help create new economic activity, generate revenue and grow the tax base through quality-of-life based economic development.
Create a job magnet to rival any major city.
With a transformed downtown and increased livability, our region can attract and retain employers and employees alike.
Reduce the taxpayer costs for highway upkeep.
Decreasing peak-hour demands can help keep our roads in better shape while potentially reducing maintenance costs.
Make transportation and housing fairer.
Improved walkability and transit will expand opportunities and increase affordability.
Improve air quality and public health.
Balanced development will reduce urban heat sink effect, while improved transit and walkability will reduce vehicular traffic.
Reduce traffic congestion.
Grid distribution means less standstill traffic and lighter demands on the roads
Improve public safety.
Increased grid connectivity will make it easier for public safety officials to respond quickly.
Make our region the “poster child” for 21st-century urban livability.
Autonomous vehicles for logistics and grid based transit create new demand models with efficiencies not anticipated in current modeling based capacity.

Upholding Ike’s Vision

The massive interstates dividing cities and neighborhoods were never part of President Eisenhower’s vision for American highways:

“[President Eisenhower] went on to say that the matter of running Interstate routes through the congested parts of the cities was entirely against his original concept and wishes… He added that those who had not advised him that such was being done, and those who steered the program in such a direction, had not followed his wishes.” 

Notes from Meeting April 6th, 1960

Source: Eisenhower Presidential Library Archives

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