FISHERS, Ind. (Nov. 10, 2015) - Not everyone is rejoicing the arrival of IKEA. Traffic is already a major concern along the I-69 corridor. According to INDOT, I-69 is the most traveled roadway out of Indianapolis. Now, add a future furniture store, like IKEA, expected to bring in thousands of shoppers and some Fishers residents aren’t all that excited.
“Well it’s already congested now so I guess you’re just going to add more to it,” said Fishers resident Chad Young.
When it was announced furniture giant IKEA would make Fishers its newest home, not everyone was waiting with a shopping cart.
“I don’t live too far from it and we’re already considering looking and moving elsewhere,” said Young.
“If the people in Fishers think they have a lot of traffic congestion right now they've seen nothing yet,” said Richard Feinberg, Head of Consumer Science at Purdue University.
Feinberg knows the traffic that comes with an IKEA. Already, 143,000 commuters travel I-69 through Fishers every day. Add a 296,000 square foot furniture store and that traffic he anticipates may be too much to handle.
“It's going to be a very big problem unless they plan for it,” said Feinberg.
“We were already doing some significant investments in the area in terms of road improvements. We were looking to add another lane on 116th Street, we’re doing 106th Street interchange we were doing all those things because we knew this area was poised for growth,” said Fishers’ Mayor, Scott Fadness.
Major construction projects, like adding an interchange to I-69 at 106th street and another lane to 116th Fadness says will alleviate some of the anticipated IKEA congestion.
“They are sensitive we get the work done in time so it doesn’t bother with them opening their front doors,” he said.
Still though, not everyone is convinced.
“I like the store but there’s just going to be a lot more traffic. I’m afraid it’s going to get to be like Castleton, 82nd street,” said one Fishers resident.
Ground is expected to be broken in on the future site at 116th and I-69 in the fall of 2016.