The section of Neely Avenue from Ball State’s campus to Minnetrista will soon have a new look.

New medians, greenery and streetlights will be installed as part of the partnership between INDOT and the city of Muncie. 

Arron Kidder, consultant for the City of Muncie, said the bid for the project was awarded last month. The project was supposed to start last year, but Kidder said delays in preliminary engineering and getting right-of-way acquisition took longer than expected.

After the project is completed, street parking will no longer be allowed.

“Whenever you do any sort of capital improvement or construction or road project, it’s always tough on those who have to commute and those that live in the immediate vicinity," Kidder said. "But we’re hoping that the landlords and the property owners there will be able to work around that with the alleys and driveways that are there. It’ll be a good project overall once it is all done."

Tom Schamp does community outreach for Riverside United Methodist Church, which is located on Neely. He said he has concerns about where people who live on Neely will park, as well as how members of his church will access handicapped parking.

“There must be a reason why they park on the street, even though the landlords are supposed to provide adequate parking," Schamp said. "We just have an interest in what’s going to happen, what problems are going to arise."

Schamp said the church doesn’t anticipate any issues with his church’s entrance and exit and hopes the project has a positive impact on the city and allows for a better partnership between Ball State and the church.

Kidder said a final construction schedule will not be available until after a pre-construction meeting March 18, but construction will start mid-spring or early summer and is expected to be completed by the start of the 2016 Fall Semester.