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red rapid transit line study

Indy Connect completed a more detailed study of the Red Rapid Transit Line in 2013 and will continue to move the line through Project Development and Preliminary Engineering Phase in 2015.  This continues to prepare the region to apply for Federal funding to construct the project through the Federal Transit Administration at the appropriate time.
The Red Line is 25 miles long and extends from Westfield in the North, through Downtown, to Greenwood in the South. It connects to key destinations including Carmel, Broad Ripple, Butler, the Children's Museum, the IU Health Hospital Complex, Eli Lilly, and the University of Indianapolis.  The corridor connects some of the fastest growing population and employment centers in the region and serves one of the key commuting corridors.  


The Alternatives Analysis study provided recommendations for the Red Line’s vehicle type, route, station locations, and operating features.  Following this initial planning process, the study will proceed into phases that include a federally mandated environmental review, engineering and design, and finally construction and operation.  

Recommended Vehicle Type

Bus Rapid Transit is the recommended vehicle type for the Red Line.  Light rail, streetcars, and commuter rail were also evaluated, but existing population density, employment density, potential ridership, right-of-way constraints, and operating characteristics such as travel time benefits, development potential, and capital costs indicated that Bus Rapid Transit is the best fit for the Red Line. 

The Route

The Alternatives Analysis study recommends a 28-mile route utilizing rapid transit service to connect Carmel  (north) with  Greenwood (south) via Downtown Indianapolis.  The route connects strong employment locations, visitor destinations, educational and health institutions, and other significant destinations within our region.   

Red Alternative Map 05-2014.jpg

The map on the left illustrates the recommended route.  There are only two areas that are not yet fully defined: the segment between 16th and 38th Streets and the segment connecting Downtown Indianapolis to Fountain Square.  Those two areas are currently being further refined in order to eliminate weaker options and recommend on specific route before beginning the environmental review process. 

A supplemental study beginning in September 2014 will determine the potential of and recommendations for expanding the Red Line further north to connect to Grand Park in Westfield. 

Station Opportunities 

Recommended station locations reflect a strength for future development potential, as well as highest demand for service, based on the amount of residential, employment, attraction, educational, or health facilities located within 1/4-1/2 mile of the identified intersections.

In addition, preliminary station design concepts have been created to help the community visualize how a potential station may function in certain areas.  The stations are intended to include sustainable, durable materials; have modular components to enable growth for special events or over time as demand increases; include amenities like seating, paying for your ticket at the station instead of on the vehicle, and real-time arrival information among others; and would vary in size to fit the context of the station area.   

200 E. Washington St.

City-County Building, Room 1922

Indianapolis, IN 46204