I-69 project in Bloomington back on after shutdown

Construction on the I-69 project has resumed after a work stoppage. (WISH Photo Howard Monroe)
Construction on the I-69 project has resumed after a work stoppage. (WISH Photo Howard Monroe)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) – After being stalled over a payment dispute, the I-69 construction project in Monroe County is back on.

“Everybody is optimistic that we’re finally back on track,” said Mark Thompson, the owner of Thompson Furniture, which is in the middle of the construction project in Bloomington.

Construction on Section 5 of the I-69 project was ground to a halt in early September because contractors weren’t being paid.

“This is a debacle,” said Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton when announcing the shutdown in September. “Our neighbors are all suffering because state government hasn’t kept it’s end of the bargain.”

Hamilton said the construction firms were short-handed $2.3 million by Isolux Corsan, the general contractor.

“It is far past time for this administration to step in, ensure payment and get the road completed as soon as possible,” said Hamilton.

Isolux Corsan is based in Austin Texas. In a statement issued in September, they said the delay and lack of payment was because of geological and permitting issues. They said those issues had to be resolved before construction could start again.

At Thompson Furniture, they said their biggest issue is customers don’t know they’re open.

“The customers when they see a lot of the orange barrels they’re confused about where they can see us from the cut through. Some of them have to make u-turns come back around,” said Thompson.

Putting the delays and traffic behind him, Thompson said he’s ready to have the project completed.

“It’s been a long haul and we’re hoping to see the end of it,” he said.

Construction of the roadway was scheduled to be completed this month. But because of the delays, completion has now been pushed back to the end of July 2017.