MARION COUNTY, Ind. — Access from Southport Road to State Road 37 North is closed this week as crews make final preps to bring drivers onto the new I-69 travel lanes.

Drivers who need to go north from Southport Rd. are asked to take Harding St. to NB SR 37. Some drivers have had a tough time with the quick adjustment.

”The signage was kind of confusing. I actually went 37 South because that was the way that it looked that you were supposed to go. To get off on County Line and then wrap around,” said Trevor Smith, who lives just off Southport Rd. and heads north on SR 37 every day for work.

Overall, Smith said he’s been happy with the project.

”I think it’s always good trying to get rid of stoplights,” Smith said.

And that is exactly what the I-69 Finish Line project has done between Indy and Martinsville. The latest stoplight to get the axe will be the light at Southport Rd. along State Road 37.

Once the new lanes of what will be I-69 NB are open, both directions of traffic will be moved from SR 37 onto the new I-69 lanes.

The light at Banta Rd. will also soon be permanently taken down. Banta Rd. will no longer have access to State Road 37 but Banta Rd. traffic will continue underneath the new I-69.

”That’s a pretty congested area most of the time, so once that opens up I think it’s going to be a lot easier for us. The only thing then I got to do is figure out how to get back on 465,” said James Strong. Strong has lived off Banta Rd. for about 13 years.

Old Southport Rd. also no longer has access to SR 37 as of this week. That change is permeant.

The latest opening for the Southport Rd. and SR 37/I-69 interchange is the on-ramp from Southport Rd. to SR 37 SB. The ramp will have a temporary light this week as crews wait to get traffic shifted from the old SR 37 lanes to the new I-69 lanes.

Kyleigh Cramer with INDOT said the temporary light is all about safety.

”We just can’t have traffic flying through there and guess when to get on there,” said Cramer.

Smith said he’s already seen the new ramp help traffic.

”It seems to be a little bit better now that they have opened at least one of the lanes on Southport onto 37 South,” Smith said.

Just north up SR 37, you can already see some progress on what will be the end of the I-69 Finish Line project, the future I-69 interchange with I-465 and an extra lane added onto both directions of I-465 on the south side of Indy.

With construction crews already out there doing this work, INDOT wants drivers to be extra careful on this stretch

”That does force us to not have shoulders on 465 in some areas so the biggest thing we want to tell people right now is to be safe and just slow down,” Cramer said.

The I-69 Finish Line project is set to finish at the end of 2024.