The U.S. 30 Coalition is an advocacy group charged with upgrading U.S. 30 to a freeway, from Valparaiso to the Ohio line. They want to ensure that U.S. 30 works for the citizens, businesses, farmers and all other community members, all while providing safe travel for drivers.
According to the U.S. 30 Coalition website, there are currently high truck volumes all along U.S. 30, at some points reaching 35%. The overall traffic is growing rapidly, in areas increasing 8% in the last year. Given high growth and high truck numbers, the number and severity of crashes is an issue that needs to be resolved. This becomes even more of a problem when considering the 344 potential impact points along the corridor. Upgrading U.S. 30 to a freeway would lead to 323 fewer accidents and 3 fewer fatalities a year. An improved U.S. 30 would result in $716 million in accident cost savings.
As a freeway U.S. 30 will have a huge economic benefit for our region. INDOT predicts the increased safety and mobility along the corridor will bring in additional business to the area. This is expected to result in 10,572 new jobs. Gross regional product will increase by $959 million. Real personal income will increase by $943 million.
Every driver on U.S. 30 as a freeway will see a benefit. INDOT predicts that the increased mobility will save drivers in travel time. Drivers will also see 18,382 hours of delay saved per day. The cost of operating your vehicle will decrease significantly from greater fuel efficiency and fewer needed car repairs. And there is benefit to the environment as well, with emissions cost savings of $64 million.
Plymouth’s Mayor, Mark Senter and Jerry Chavez, Director of Marshall County Economic Development Corporation are members of the U.S. 30 Coalition and have been instrumental in the planning of the creation of a freeway along U.S. 30.
At this point, Mayor Senter and Mr. Chavez would like to have the public’s input about this project.
There will be a Public Meeting on Tuesday, April 24th, at 6:30 pm. The meeting will be held at the County Commissioner’s meeting room on the second floor of the County Building at 112 West Jefferson Street.
James Turnwald, Executive Director of MACOG (Michiana Area Council of Governments) will present the current information regarding the U.S. 30 project and then the audience will have the opportunity to ask questions about the project. The meeting will last for approximately 1 hour.
If you have questions, please contact either Mayor Senter at 574-936-6717 or Mr. Chavez at 574-935-8499.