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Stuck in Indianapolis traffic? Here’s why.

Road construction barriers at 10th Street and Indiana Avenue on Thursday, April 18, 2024, in Indianapolis. (Photo by Jenna Watson/Mirror Indy)

INDIANAPOLIS (MIRROR INDY) — Gridlock traffic at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. Stop-and-go traffic on I-465. An hourlong commute from Plainfield to downtown Indy.

Sensing a theme?

To some drivers, the 2024 construction season in Indianapolis might seem more vigorous than usual compared with previous years.  And there’s some data to back up that assumption.

The Indianapolis Department of Public Works’ capital budget is $363 million in 2024, a nearly 300% increase from seven years ago. In addition, in the last five years, the city has had an annual average of 79 projects sent to bid compared with 54 projects in the previous five-year period.

Here’s a look at some of the construction projects affecting traffic around town.

Nickel Plate Trail closure

A one-mile stretch of East Fall Creek Parkway between 38th Street and Keystone Avenue, near the Indiana State Fairgrounds, is closed through the end of the month for construction on the Nickel Plate Trail. It’s part of an effort to transform an old railroad bed into a multi-use trail connecting the State Fairgrounds, Fall Creek, Monon Trail, Castleton and Hamilton County.

There are multiple signs in the area indicating the closure, but drivers appear to be having trouble following the rules.

The Fall Creek Parkway detour is as follows: 


  • Head west on 38th Street at the intersection of 38th Street and Fall Creek Parkway 
  • Turn north on College Avenue 
  • Head east on 46th Street 
  • Turn south onto Keystone Avenue 
  • The detour ends once driver has returned to Fall Creek Parkway 


  • Head north onto Keystone Avenue at the intersection of Keystone Avenue and Fall Creek Parkway 
  • Turn west on 46th Street 
  • Head south on College Avenue 
  • Turn east on 38th Street 
  • The detour ends once driver has returned to Fall Creek Parkway 

The Indianapolis section of the trail, which will stretch from the State Fairgrounds to Hamilton County, is expected to be complete by spring 2025.

10th Street and Indiana Avenue

As part of the expansion of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail, construction crews are doing work in the area of 10th Street and Indiana Avenue. The project will connect the Madam Walker Legacy Center on Indiana Avenue to the 16 Tech Bridge just north of 10th Street. That work, which began in late 2021, is expected to wrap up in June.

Indy DPW plans to do strip patching in the area next week, which is good news for motorists who are sick of driving through that treacherous, pot-holed laden intersection.

2-way conversions

As previously reported by Mirror Indy, portions of New York and Michigan streets are being converted to two-way thoroughfares, part of an intentional effort to slow traffic to decrease crashes and spur business growth along the once-thriving corridor.

New York and Michigan streets, between College Avenue and Ellenberger Park, will be reduced to one lane during the construction period, which is expected to wrap up at the end of the year.

Interstate work

Long-term road construction on Interstate 465 between 56th Street/Shadeland Avenue and Keystone Avenue/IN-431 is creating headaches for commuters on the east side. That work is expected to be finished in mid-October.

The ramp from northbound Binford Boulevard to westbound I-465 is closed for road construction as part of the “Clear Path 465” initiative, a project that will widen I-465 on the northeast side and reconstruct the I-69/I-465 interchange. Work is expected to be completed by October 2025.

Navigating the chaos

For the latest updates, drivers can follow Indy DPW on social media or sign up for their newsletters. A full list of 2024 construction season projects and updates can be found here.

Peter Blanchard covers local government. Reach him at 317-605-4836 or Follow him on X @peterlblanchard.