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INDOT Considers J-style Highway Intersections

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Minnesota Department of Transportation
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Indiana Department of Transportation officials have proposed a new type of intersection for a rural road in Southern Indiana.

A "J" intersection is designed to be a safer way to cross a divided highway. The idea was proposed last week for the intersection at US 231 and IN 62 in Spencer County.

INDOT communications director Jason Tiller says while it would be the first of its kind in Indiana, it's proven around the country to cut crashes and fatalities by as much as 50 percent. The intersection in Spencer County has seen multiple fatal crashes.

The J Intersection is designed so cars do not drive straight across any divided highway. Instead, to merge with the opposite side of traffic drivers turn right, go a short way down the road, merge into a mini-exit in the divide, and turn left into traffic when there is a safe gap.

Tiller says a J Intersection might seem complicated, but it’s actually simpler.

“It reduces the amount of information the driver has to take in in order to cross the intersection whereas the way it is right now, you’re crossing the intersection and you have to look at oncoming traffic in both directions,” Tiller says.

You can find a video explaining how it works on the INDOT Southwest Facebook page.

INDOT will hold public meetings and get public comment before making a final decision on its plans.

Tiller says that a J Intersection could also be proposed for other crossings around the state. 

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