For as long as I can remember, Boonville residents and businesses have been troubled by the presence of dirty, loud coal trucks driving through the heart of their historic downtown square. However, much to everyone’s relief, all of that is about to change.
After 50 years of frustration and several years of planning, I shared in the joy of our community this past Thursday as we officially broke ground on the Boonville Bypass. This 4.2-mile bypass will route traffic around the west end of the city, thus avoiding the rattling of store-front windows, traffic congestion and that lingering layer of dust and dirt—all of which have become typical of downtown.
There is no doubt that when something of this magnitude comes to fruition, many people played a role in its success. Personally, I lived in the city for 15 years and just outside of town for 19. Back in 2010, Sue Ellspermann and I joined the Legislature at the same time. Having been born and raised in Ferdinand, she was also familiar with Boonville’s long-held traffic concerns. She and I agreed that however we could assist, legislatively or otherwise, we wanted to see this achieved.
Since becoming our state’s 50th Lieutenant Governor, Ellspermann has continued to be an advocate for the Boonville Bypass. With her assistance and the collaboration of both the Legislature and members of the community, bids finally began on this project in September.
One group, in particular, has been instrumental in this process: Alcoa. Their unrivaled generosity is truly the biggest reason why any of this has been possible. Alcoa and their subsidiaries have donated several parcels of land for this project and have selflessly worked in the best interest of the community that they proudly call home.
While it is no secret why many residents desired a bypass, it is important to point out that these same residents love having this industry as a staple in the community. Alcoa is Warrick County’s largest employer and is greatly esteemed and appreciated as a result. They have routinely partnered with the community on various projects and play an invaluable role in moving the surrounding area forward.
I am pleased to witness this historic moment in Boonville, but I am also aware that these issues are not entirely unique to our community. In fact, a major focus throughout the next legislative session will likely be the construction and maintenance of transportation and infrastructure statewide. As always, I will continue my efforts to positively impact our community. If you have any ideas in mind or simply wish to express a concern, feel free to contact my office via phone at 317-232-9833 or via email at email@example.com.
The Boonville Bypass is just one example of the commitment that our state has made to building, maintaining and improving local infrastructure. I was proud to be a part of this groundbreaking ceremony and am glad to see construction moving full steam ahead. I look forward to seeing the progression of this project and the positive impact it will have in the region for years to come.