New I-35 Interchange Open for Traffic, Business - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

New I-35 Interchange Open for Traffic, Business

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Jessica Daley

jdaley@myabc5.com

@TheDaleyReport

A new interchange means less traffic congestion and more space for businesses.

Cars wasted no time taking advantage of this new stretch of pavement from I-35 to NE 36th street in Ankeny. A ribbon cutting ceremony opened the exit Tuesday afternoon.

Drivers can skip the backed up streets of First and Delaware to make a quicker trip to their homes or to run errands. Just ask Christina Warren, who lives near the interchange.
 
"Excited! It's probably going to cut 5-10 minutes off my commute time, I'm guessing."

Add that up, she'll save about an hour a week.

"I think it's just really going to lighten the load on the other exchanges," Warren said.

She is also excited about the new businesses popping up. The gas is already pumping at Kum & Go, and a building next door will house three retailers. Two companies have committed to the location, but their names are not being released yet.
 

"Everybody as they're coming and going from work want some of the general conveniences that they need, so dry cleaners, food, fast food," said Joey Beech, executive director of Ankeny Economic Development Corporation.

Bigger things could also soon call the NE 36th corridor home.

"Because it is on a major freeway system going between Minneapolis and Texas you would expect a lot of other big operations to come in or large businesses," Beech explained.

For example, a casino company has talked about building there, but those plans are just a proposal right now. While not everyone supports the casino idea, people can get behind this new way to get around Ankeny.
 
The project cost $25 million, which also included widening about one mile of I-35 to six lanes.

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