April 16, 2024

Broad Ripple Avenue

Broad Ripple Village, Indiana
Indianapolis DPW
Service Line:
Transportation Design
Jessica Hawley, PE, Santiago Burgos III, & Emily Nelson, PE

Our Broad Ripple Avenue Improvement Project for Indianapolis DPW has won the 2024 Project of the Year Award from ASCE Indiana!

Lochmueller Group designed approximately 0.7 miles of Broad Ripple Avenue from College Avenue to Winthrop Avenue, which is in a high-traffic, high-profile location at the western end of the Commercial District. The roadway is built-up and urban in nature, with high patronage of the adjacent businesses by vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

Broad Ripple Village is one of seven cultural districts in the City with an important nightlife, dining, and local retail district and approximately 17,000 residents. The project began as a dire need for stormwater improvements to the corridor to eliminate flooding on the street and adjacent businesses. The City's goal along Broad Ripple Avenue was also to create a safer, more pedestrian- and multi-modal friendly environment through the study corridor with greater trail access to nearby facilities while maintaining acceptable traffic operating conditions.

To meet the goal of a more accessible pedestrian corridor, the parking lane on the south side of the roadway was removed to accommodate a wider multi-use path to connect College Avenue to the Monon Trail. Lochmueller's Roadway Team worked closely with Lochmueller's Hydraulic Design Team and the City of Indianapolis to create solutions that meet the needs of stormwater collection as well as multi-modal mobility of the corridor. The challenge of a tight corridor and designing from building face to building face was overcome by altering the profile of the road, where possible, to get water to drain to the roadway instead of toward buildings, but also by implementing collection solutions within the sidewalk itself using permeable articulated blocks, developed by PaveDrain. In addition to the improvements to Broad Ripple proper, the Broad Ripple Village Association (BRVA) and the City partnered to fund a 12'-wide multi-modal connection between the Monon Trail and Broad Ripple Park, located at Primrose Avenue east of the village.

Articulated permeable blocks, PaveDrain, were used to collect stormwater within the sidewalks to provide ADA-compliant slopes.

During construction, pedestrian access was kept flexible and accommodating. The existing sidewalks stayed open during the storm sewer installation, pedestrian accessibility was maintained on pavement during the sidewalk reconstruction, there was business-focused signage for pedestrian detours, and sidewalk bridges were utilized for better access.

Due to the imperviousness of the area, the volume of stormwater to be collected required a 48"-diameter storm sewer trunk line that was connected to an existing 144"-diameter interceptor within Winthrop Avenue. Large water quality units were implemented to improve the outflow quality of stormwater into the White River. An in-line check valve was installed within the new connecting 48"-diameter storm sewer to make sure no backflow would occur when the existing interceptor was at full flow. To account for full flow in the interceptor, stormwater was designed to be rerouted along Westfield Boulevard in the instance of large storm events, giving Broad Ripple Avenue storm water relief even in heavy rain events.

The tight utility corridor called for cooperation between many entities. The large diameter stormwater pipe was thread between existing utilities where possible. Major relocations were required for gas and water while existing signals were reused. The overhead AES electric corridor was kept in place along the south side of Broad Ripple Avenue within the widened sidewalk, saving the project years of time and millions of dollars. PaveDrain permeable pavers were installed within sidewalk areas and in line with the overhead electric poles to create a visual divide in the widened sidewalk along the corridor.

Along with the typical project stakeholders, extensive coordination with the local BRVA, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police, ParkIndy, City Councilmen, and numerous local business owners was necessary to keep local businesses abreast of traffic control changes and the completion schedule. Overall, the project positively impacted the community by enhancing regional connectivity, increasing multi-modal access, improving safety, improving drainage capacity and water quality, and maintaining a community identity!

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