The Ohio Department of Transportation announced today that it expects to invest a record $2.5 billion into more than 1,000 projects during this year’s construction season to improve transportation and make Ohio’s roads safer across the state.
“There is no better place to be than right here in Ohio, and these new projects will help us keep our infrastructure in a good state of repair,” said Gov. Mike DeWine. “Everyone in our state benefits from safe roads, and I am looking forward to seeing the end results of this year’s roadway improvement projects.”
This year’s statewide construction program includes 31 new projects that are considered “major” with a value above $10 million. There are 190 safety projects aimed directly at reducing serious or deadly crashes. More than 5,700 miles of pavement will be improved, and 823 bridges will be repaired or replaced.
“These investments are made possible by hard-working Ohioans who use these roads and bridges every day to get to work, school, medical appointments, and family vacations. It is our duty to ensure the resources entrusted to us are used wisely,” said ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks.
This construction season isn’t all about building new roads. About 95 cents of every dollar is being invested back into preserving existing roads and bridges.
In Northwest Ohio, three projects were highlighted at kickoff events held today in Findlay and Port Clinton.
Chris Hughes, ODOT District 1 deputy director, said construction of two bridges in Hancock County to carry traffic over Ohio 15 and eliminate the at-grade intersections at County Road 180 and County Road 169 displays the importance of partnership.
“The projects we’re undertaking this year to eliminate two intersections where crashes continue to occur is the best example of state and local officials coming together to address a local issue,” he said.
In Ottawa County, a project deemed “Gateway to the Islands,” an intersection safety improvement project at Ohio 2/Ohio 53 in Port Clinton will construct a roundabout at the westbound leg of Route 2/Route 53, and also a roundabout at Route 53 and the state road intersection. The project’s impact on tourism was at the center of the planning and construction schedule of the project.
“We designed this project based on holiday travel, rather than the customary peak travel, to be sure these intersections and this corridor would have the extra capacity to serve the estimated 11 million visitors that come to Lake Erie every year,” said Pat McColley, ODOT District 2 deputy director. In addition, the project will begin after Labor Day to avoid peak summer travel, he said.
Wood County projects include:
Reconstructing I-75 between Wales Road and South Avenue in the Rossford/Northwood/Toledo area. This began in August 2018 and is expected to be complete this summer. The cost is $180 million.
Reconstructing Ohio 25 between U.S. 6 and Cygnet Road. Construction started in March 2022 and is expected to be complete in October 2023. The cost is $21.7 million.
Doing an emergency repair of Lime City Road over I-75, due to a crash. This will start in July and be complete in October. The cost is $5 million.
Resurfacing I-75 from Ohio 199 to Glenwood Road. This will start in September and conclude in August 2024. There is no dollar amount.
Other notable projects:
The replacement of a bridge on U.S. 127 in Defiance County over the Maumee River. ODOT and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources have partnered to provide a new canoe launch at this bridge to provide public access to this scenic section of the Maumee River.
A project on Ohio 117 in the village of Westminster, Allen County, will resurface and add sidewalks, lighting, and curb and gutter.
Construction of a roundabout at Ohio 108 and U.S. 24 in Henry County.
Resurfacing and safety improvement project on U.S. 24/Anthony Wayne Trail, between Monclova Road and Detroit Avenue, Lucas County.
Replacement of a bridge on Central Avenue between Reynolds and Corey roads, Toledo/Ottawa Hills, over the Ottawa River.
Motorists should pay extra attention when driving through work zones. According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, there were 4,628 work zone-related crashes in Ohio last year, 21 were deadly resulting in 23 deaths, and 85 involved serious injuries. Summit County recorded the most in the state with 814 work zone crashes. June is the top month for work zone crashes (585) with Wednesday being the top day (833). Most occur between 3-5 p.m.
In 2022, there were 133 ODOT crews (workers, vehicles, and equipment) struck while working along Ohio roadways.
“These workers are out there ensuring that your travels are as safe as possible. They just ask for your attention and patience in return,” Marchbanks said.
Ohio’s Move Over law requires drivers to move over a lane for vehicles with flashing lights. If drivers cannot safely move over, they are required to slow down.