Waterford Parkway bridge
The city has constructed Waterford Mills Parkway, which is also known as the South Link Road. The idea is to extend the road from where it ends at Regent Street east of the Marion Line and carry it over the tracks on a two-lane bridge to Ind. 15. From there, westbound traffic could either go west on C.R. 40 to an improved C.R. 17, or north to C.R. 38 and then west across the Elkhart River.
Elkhart County officials have recently decided to construct a new three-lane bridge over the river on C.R. 38. The City Council is paying for the extension of the new C.R. 17 from C.R. 38 to C.R. 40 to handle the expected increase in traffic. That new extension will be a “super two-lane” road, with limited access to hook into the four-lane C.R. 17.
Another portion of the rail-vehicle improvement plan is to establish a quiet zone along the Marion Line in Goshen from College Avenue north to Lincoln Avenue. To create the quiet zone, city officials have to meet state and federal guidelines for rail crossing safety.
To meet those guidelines, city officials will close some crossings and install gates at others so train engineers don’t have to blow train horns at each crossing, creating a racket throughout the city at all times of the day and night.
The first phase of the $1.7 million crossing plan has been approved by the City Council and the Redevelopment Commission will pay the city’s 10 percent portion of the cost. A federal grant will cover 90 percent of the cost.
Six crossings along the Marion Line will have gates installed. Of the six, Cripe said earlier this year that three have just stop signs and three have flashing lights. None have gates now.
“There are still four more intersections that will have to be upgraded,” Cripe said.