INDIANAPOLIS – The ramp from westbound Allisonville Road to westbound I-465 is expected to remain closed through the Tuesday evening rush hour as repair crews work to fix a large sinkhole on the ramp.
An INDOT inspector spotted the hole around 6:30 Tuesday morning, prompting the closure of the ramp. The hole is located in the paved “gore point” between the ramp lane and the main travel lane of the interstate. While no travel lanes are directly affected by the hole, closing the ramp gives repair crews room to work, INDOT said.
“Just working out there to try to fix it and get that temporary fix so that people can use that ramp again,” said INDOT spokesperson Mallory Duncan.
INDOT crews at the repair site said the hole was caused by a pipe failure underground. Specifically, the failure occurred where a pipe connects to a culvert that runs under the ramp and interstate. A slow water leak, possibly over several years, eroded the soil under the surface and eventually caused the collapse.
While it may appear lucky that the hole opened between the ramp and travel lanes, INDOT officials say that is a result of the interstate system’s construction. Pipe connections to culverts are not typically located under travel lanes due to this reason.
Excavation and repair crews spent Tuesday assessing the extent of the damage in preparation for repairs.
“We’re digging down to make sure that the pipe failure was localized just in that one area,” Duncan said. “So that there’s not issues down the road where another portion of the road could cave in, maybe if there’s another issue with the pipe.”
The work is expected to last for the rest of the evening Tuesday. The ramp will be closed for Tuesday evening’s rush hour.
If the damage is not more extensive than believed, the ramp could potentially be reopened overnight or Wednesday morning.