State Street Project

Economic rebirth in Indiana downtowns can be a two-way street – literally.

Hoosier cities are spending millions to convert one-way main streets into two-way arteries.

The change can help boost the local economy, but it can also be hard on small businesses, like the one John von Erdmansdorff runs in West Lafayette.

Von Erdmansdorff is a local legend who’s spent almost 50 years selling all kinds of treasures out of his row of stores, Von’s Shops, on State Street.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

For months, we’ve known a couple things about this summer’s road construction in Greater Lafayette.

One, it was always going to be a hassle.

And secondly, the cities seemed committed to trying to complete major projects while most Purdue students were away for the summer.

But the City of Lafayette now says the closure of the county’s busiest intersection isn’t slated to start until July and will last past the time students and their parents return.

Chris Morisse Vizza / WBAA News

West Lafayette officials Wednesday officially announced they plan to close off two additional streets in conjunction with the State Street overhaul.

City Development Director Erik Carlson says he’s been telling businesses for months that Brown Street would be dead-ended at River Road, even though there was no money secured for any further improvements.

City of West Lafayette

As legislation season ends and a prolonged construction season begins in West Lafayette, the city faces challenges from multiple sides.

On one side is a bill which would have given cell phone companies carte blanche to put small cell towers almost anywhere they could find a utility hookup.

On the other are small business owners who say the city and Purdue University may benefit from State Street’s overhaul, but they’re being imperiled.

Chris Morisse Vizza/WBAA Radio

This morning, WBAA's Wake-Up Call focuses on West Lafayette’s State Street reconstruction project and the effects of the extremely limited access to businesses along the street.

The owners of Von’s Dough Shack announced this week they’re permanently closing the business because customers are having a tough time getting to building.

Also this week, business owners learned the city will permanently close Brown Street will at River Road, eliminating a point of entry to stores near Wabash Landing.   

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

The owners of Von’s Dough Shack, a calzone restaurant along West Lafayette’s State Street, say the roadway’s overhaul is forcing them to close.

Chris Morisse Vizza / WBAA News

Contractors who’ve begun demolition on the easternmost portions of West Lafayette’s State Street redesign now want permission to close the busiest intersection on the road for a couple nights in early May.

West Lafayette City Engineer Ed Garrison Tuesday received approval from the city’s Board of Public Works for two noise ordinance exceptions so the corner of State Street and River Road could be shuttered for underground pipe to be laid.

City of West Lafayette

Greater Lafayette residents who complained about traffic snarls last summer are getting their first tastes of what an even more hectic season this summer will be.

This week, construction began on West Lafayette’s State Street and you, the listeners to WBAA’s Ask the Mayor, have many questions. We put all of them that have come in so far to West Lafayette Mayor John Dennis during our next half hour.

The first phase of the reconstruction of State Street is due to begin Monday, and that’ll mean changes for bus riders in West Lafayette. CityBus employees and riders alike are trying to see the closure of one of the city’s busiest streets as a blessing in disguise.

CityBus officials have planned detours for the company’s routes that use State Street. Development Manager Bryce Gibson says he hopes the detours are an opportunity for people who hadn’t previously been using public transportation to start.

Sarah Fentem / WBAA

West Lafayette is hoping to minimize the shock of closing one of the city’s most traveled streets by communicating with residents on the front end of the massive State Street overhaul. 

Starting April 1st, State Street will be shut down from University Drive to Airport Road. Segments of Tapawingo Drive and Marsteller Street will also be closed.

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