Boone County looking to bank problematic curve on 96th Street

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ZIONSVILLE, Ind. – Officials are looking to further enhance a curve on 96th Street. Crash data shows the southern curve between Moore and Ford roads has the highest number of incidents, despite improvements to the corner in the past.

According to Boone County engineer Craig Parks, crash reports show the biggest issue for drivers in the county is drivers leaving their lane or leaving their lane and driving off the road completely.

Drivers heading east on 96th Street have had problems keeping their wheels on the pavement. Parks said weekly, someone misjudges the curve and drivers into the woods.

“A few personal injuries, but substantial damage to their cars,” said Boone County Commissioner Tom Santelli.

The county first got word about the issue from neighbors in the area who would constantly lose power due to a driver taking out an IPL pole.

“Somebody slides off and knocks the poles down,” said Don Towns, who lives near the corner.

Parks said the power company finally moved the poles across the street. His department has taken steps to get drivers to slow down, but the results haven’t been ideal.

Steps started with signs around the corner. Then workers placed stripes on the road and a street light was put in to help drivers. None of those measures helped much.

Towns said the one step that’s proved to be the best was the installation of a flashing light. The light warns drivers about the curve and tells them to slow down to 15 miles-an-hour.

“So many individuals are getting re-routed that way with GPS units,” said Parks. “So, traffic volumes have increased.”

On Monday, the Boone County Board of Commissioners opened bids on the project. Prices were higher than anticipated, as the county hopes to spend roughly $250,000 on the work.

It calls for resurfacing the road and banking the corner. If the results aren’t there, the county will look to add a friction boosting treatment to help drivers stay on the road.

Parks said work would begin after the school year ends. This area of 96th Street is used by families with children who attend schools in Pike Township and Zionsville.

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