Transportation & Utilities
Provide a safe and efficient transportation system for all users, well maintained utility infrastructure, and superior municipal services in coordination with land use planning, to connect and serve neighborhoods, employment centers, and other community destinations.
- In Progress
Use investments in transportation and utility infrastructure as a mechanism to direct desired development types in appropriate locations.
Transportation and utility infrastructure are vital components of any new development. By strategically locating infrastructure investments and service extensions, a City can direct development to desired locations. Developers will be more likely to pursue opportunities at sites already served by municipal utilities and a robust transportation network, as opposed to paying for extensions to other sites.
Create and maintain a capital improvements plan to prioritize and budget for future infrastructure upgrades and extensions.
A capital improvements plan aids in plan implementation by allocating the necessary funding for short-range infrastructure and capital improvement projects on a three to five-year basis. The plan states the City Council’s prioritization of the financial resources available for capital project spending by identifying which projects should be included, when they should be constructed, and how they will be financed. As projects are completed each year, they are removed from the capital improvements plan and new priorities are added.
Utilize access management best practices along arterial and collector roadways to ensure safe and efficient traffic conditions.
Access management involves coordinating and balancing development access needs with the area-wide transportation goals along a corridor. The goal of access management is to ensure and improve safety, preserve function and mobility, and manage existing and future access in a regular and consistent manner. Successful access management strategies require careful planning and anticipation of future development needs and can contribute to established community character, advance economic development goals, and protect the City’s investment in local roads.
A significant factor contributing to poor roadway function, appearance, and safety is the number of curb cuts along the road. It is recommended that primary access to new development sites be from existing collector roads or consolidated access points along arterials. Where sites can only be accessed from an arterial, driveway spacing should be maximized so motorists have time to address one set of potential conflicts before worrying about another. Driveways should also be properly set back from intersections so as not to impair intersection function.
Coordinate utility, transportation, stormwater, and other infrastructure improvements to combine construction projects and reduce costs where possible.
The City of Lebanon is the primary public facility and service provider for water, sewer, stormwater, electric, and transportation infrastructure within city limits. Other providers include the Indiana Department of Transportation, Vectren Energy, Boone REMC, AT&T, Metronet, Comcast, and others. When the City or another service provider is undertaking a capital improvements project, such as a road reconstruction or sewer line replacement that requires disturbance to the right-of-way, other potential improvements should be considered to create time efficiencies and cost savings.
Explore creation of a road impact fee and/or an established set of standards by which to determine transportation facility improvements to be funded with new development.
An impact fee is a one-time, monetary charge imposed on new development by a governmental unit to defray the capital costs of new construction or expansion of existing infrastructure needed to serve the new development. An impact fee would need to be established by the Council, through an ordinance, only after an impact fee advisory committee has been established. Impact fees can be collected for sewer and water infrastructure, parks, drainage, and roads.
Ensure right-of-way dedication with all new development and redevelopment in accordance with the Lebanon Thoroughfare Plan.
The Lebanon Thoroughfare Plan designates existing roadways based on function and identifies certain upgrades or widenings. It also designates the future extension of roadways and their general location. When new development occurs, the City should require that these roadways be built and dedicated to the City. If a developer only owns a portion of the land that is designated for the construction of the roadway, they should dedicate that portion of the right-of-way needed. Ensuring that this land is dedicated during the development process prevents the City from later having to buy the needed right-of-way.
Create an interconnected network of bicycle and pedestrian facilities in accordance with the City of Lebanon Bike & Pedestrian Plan.
Dedicated bicycle and pedestrian facilities help to provide safe travel for these additional modes of transportation, contribute to overall quality of life, and can act as an economic development tool. The Lebanon Bike & Pedestrian Plan was created in 2015 to illustrate gaps in the system, and identify future multi-use paths, bike lanes, and other multimodal transportation infrastructure. These improvements should be integrated into the capital improvements plan and prioritized to occur alongside other infrastructure improvements associated with the roadway.
Continue development of the City’s trail system, including exploration of a trail along Prairie Creek.
In addition to implementation of the Lebanon Bike & Pedestrian Plan, the City should examine the feasibility of a trail along Prairie Creek. Currently, much of the creek is lined with homes and other development, and a creek adjacent trail is unlikely. However, the Flood Resilience Plan recommends removal of a number of structures currently in the floodway or floodplain. As structures may be purchased and removed, land along Prairie Creek could become available for a trail.
Explore alternative commercial routes around Lebanon to mitigate heavy traffic through the downtown.
Downtown Lebanon is bisected by State Roads 32 and 39, which bring a number of large vehicle trips through the area. The City continues to explore an alternative truck route for these roadways to avoid potential conflicts in what should be a pedestrian-friendly district. Work is currently being done to study how SR 39 could connect with I-65 north of the City, thereby allowing trucks to use I-65 to bypass the downtown area.
Update the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Transition Plan and implement recommendations as resources are available.
The City has an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Transition Plan to identify needed upgrades within City-owned buildings and public spaces. Making every improvement in a short time frame would be much too costly for the City. By having the plan, the City can prioritize improvements and show a good faith effort in meeting the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This plan should be updated to reflect improvements that have been made and re-prioritize those still needed. Additionally, the City should continue an annual budget allocation to address ADA deficiencies.
Identify gaps in the sidewalk network and create a plan to complete priority sections.
Sidewalks are a key component of creating an attractive, walkable community. They help to connect residents to recreational amenities and commercial areas. However, several streets in the City do not have any sidewalks or they are in disrepair and need complete replacement. The 2015 Lebanon Bike & Pedestrian Plan included a sidewalk repair plan. This map should be used as a starting point to prioritize the most critical gaps and fund their replacement.
Improve pedestrian connectivity across I-65.
Interstates can be a significant barrier to pedestrian and bicycle travel. None of the bridges over I-65 around Lebanon currently include sidewalk or trail infrastructure. The City should continue coordination with INDOT to advocate for the inclusion of trail or sidewalk facilities as maintenance and improvements are made to these interchanges. This will help to ensure safe access to the business park and planned developments along S Lebanon Street (SR 39) and Hall Baker Road.
Explore opportunities to construct pedestrian facilities within the business park.
The Lebanon Business Park, as it exists today, does not have any pedestrian amenities. While an industrial park may not seem like a location likely to generate much pedestrian traffic, not everyone has a personal automobile with which to commute. Some employees of the area carpool and may have to walk from one site to another. In order to ensure pedestrian safety given the volume of truck traffic in the park, sidewalks should be added to at least one side of every street.
Extend Enterprise Boulevard east to Hall Baker Road.
The existing eastern terminus of Enterprise Boulevard is at S Lebanon Street. However, as development occurs west of I-65 between S Lebanon Street and Hall Baker Road, Enterprise Boulevard should be extended to the east. This new extension should connect to Hall Baker Road slightly south of the existing I-65/Hall Baker Road/Indianapolis Avenue interchange. This extension is important to create an east-west connection and open additional lands to potential development along the interstate.
Review signal visibility, advance warning, and timings at the SR 39 and SR 32 intersection.
The intersection of State Roads 32 and 39 has a high instance of accidents, with 65 crashes occurring in a 4-year period. The most prevalent collision type were rear end collisions. This intersection should be further studied to determine the cause of these accidents and how to improve the safety of both motorists and pedestrians.
Pursue improvements to the Hall Baker Road interchange to allow for an alternative commercial route.
The Hall Baker Road/Indianapolis Avenue interchange is an atypical design and doesn’t provide the clear access preferred by many businesses. The City should continue to advocate with INDOT for redesign and construction of a new interchange to provide better access and promote development west of I-65.
Continue discussions with INDOT and planning for relocation of the I-65 and US 52 interchange (exit 141) to a new northern location as a full-service interchange.
The Interstate 65 and State Route 52 interchange has long been an area of concern both for the City and INDOT, especially given the southbound I-65, left-lane exit onto US 52. An interchange feasibility study was conducted in 2018 to explore three potential alternatives for a new interchange. All three locations were determined to be viable; a decision on the final location will not be made until an engineering assessment, environmental documentation, cost analysis, and coordination with state and federal agencies is complete.
Work with INDOT to develop a relinquishment plan for the City to take control of SR 39/Lebanon St.
Lebanon wishes to exercise greater control of State Road 39/Lebanon Street to improve safety, pedestrian facilities, and beautification along the corridor. Ideally, SR 39 would merge with I-65 at a redesigned SR 52 interchange, north of the City. SR 39 would run concurrently with I-65 to exit 139 where it would then continue south along its existing alignment. INDOT could then relinquish the SR 39 right-of-way to the City, between I-65 to the south and the municipal limits to the north. While the City would then be responsible for maintenance, it gains the ability to construct improvements to the corridor that INDOT may have been unwilling or unlikely to make.
Pursue discussions with CSX to improve railroad overpass crossings, specifically at Camp Street and Lafayette Avenue.
Railroad overpasses along the CSX line have existed since the early 20th century. The overpasses were designed for the time and do not meet existing transportation standards. The City of Lebanon should strongly encourage CSX to improve these structures to ensure the safety of residents and improve their overall visual appearance.
Adopt a complete streets ordinance to guide public infrastructure investment in a manner that creates a better sense of public space and equal access for multiple modes of transportation.
Complete streets are designed to allow the safe access and movement of all users regardless of age and ability. A complete streets policy ensures that adequate consideration is given to multiple transportation users and abilities when designing, constructing, and reconstructing roadways. A complete streets policy is not a design prescription that states all roadways must contain every transportation element possible or that existing roadways must immediately be retrofitted. Instead, the complete streets policy requires that consideration be given to each transportation mode; walking, bicycling, driving, and transit. Obviously not all roads will be part of transit routes and some conditions may exist that prevent the inclusion of bicycle facilities. The intent is to recognize transportation corridors as more than streets for cars and to provide appropriate pedestrian and bicycle facilities in as many locations as possible.
Examine opportunities for a new fire station on west side of I-65.
As development continues to progress west of I-65, the need for emergency services will increase. The business park has grown substantially in the last decade. With the additional business activity and associated transportation impacts, a new fire station in needed to ensure adequate emergency response times. Creating a new fire station on the west side of Lebanon will lower emergency response times and increase safety for businesses, residents, and the business park.
Develop a plan to increase the water and wastewater systems treatment and conveyance capacity to accommodate new growth.
As Lebanon continues to grow, development must proceed in conjunction with utilities. Historically, the City and other utility providers have been able to serve new and growing businesses with existing capacity or service extensions. This has assisted economic development efforts as a lack of necessary utilities can be a substantial obstacle to expansion or construction. Leapfrog development patterns and reactionary utility extensions can lead to inefficiencies and increased costs. When this happens, the high costs are passed on to all customers, not just those using the upgraded or extended service. While it is important to grow and maintain excellent utility systems, these extensions should be planned in conjunction with land use and economic development efforts to ensure efficiencies for all users.
Explore opportunities for a new I-65 interchange in the southeast portion of the City, between existing exits 133 and 138.
There is a desire among City and business leaders for a new interchange in the southeast portion of the City, between exits 133 and 138. This recommendation was included in the 2017 Thoroughfare Plan, with the potential interchange location identified near CR 250 S. The feasibility and likelihood of construction of this interchange will be dependent on the type and intensity of future development in the area. This should be considered a long-term goal communicated to INDOT as part of on-going coordination efforts.