Other major changes could come with newly approved west side dev - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

EXCLUSIVE: A road swap could come along with newly approved west side development

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Along with a new development, some other major changes could be on the way for the west side of Vanderburgh County.  

The state could be taking over the busy highway.

14 News is told the county and the state could actually swap roads. University Parkway is one of those roads. If this does happen, we're told to expect some major improvements that could include expanding this road all the way up to Interstate 64.

"Yeah, I think it will be a good thing," USI student, Solomon Bennett says.  

Bennett welcomes any improvement along University Parkway, especially at the interchange with the Lloyd Expressway.

"Ease the congestion and get a better flow of students in and off campus," Bennett says.

For years, the county has looked at improving the interchange, and now, it may become a reality with what you could call the great road swap.

"This is a great way to get it done," County Commissioner Joe Kiefer says.  

Technically, Commissioner Kiefer says, it's called a reversion program. Something he's recently discussed with INDOT officials in Indianapolis.

"The state would love to have us take some of their State Roads like 57, 66, perhaps parts of 41 and return they would take University Parkway," Kiefer says.

Kiefer says it's a plan that needs more study, but one that would have a lot of benefits, especially when it comes to expanding a parkway that's expected to get even busier with the newly approved west side development.

"We would have the ability to have University Parkway extended all the way out to I-64 and then do improvements to the interchange at State Road 62 and University Parkway, do improvements here at State Road 66 and University Parkway," Kiefer says.

Kiefer says turning over ownership of the parkway to the state would put pressure on INDOT to make the improvements the county wants.

"We don't just give it to them. We would have to demand, 'Hey, for this trade out we have to have improvements going into USI.'  We have to have improvements taking this road all the way out to I-64. That's part of the deal," Kiefer says.

14 News spoke with INDOT officials who say there's no proposal on the table, but they say they're always open to talking about finding solutions to improve the roadway.  

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