Two bridge alignments to be considered

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 24, 2002

And then there were two.

Thursday, January 24, 2002

And then there were two. The Ohio Department of Transportation will present two bridge alignment proposals to Ironton Council at tonight’s meeting. One of these two proposals will become the alignment the transportation department will offer for final consideration.

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ODOT will present bridge alignment B/C-3A and B/C-3C as the two alternatives the department is considering for the proposed Ironton-Russell Bridge, Kathleen Fuller, the public information officer for ODOT’s District 9, said.

Fuller said the meeting will allow ODOT the opportunity to explain to council and the public the project’s status, and what is anticipated this year.

She added that the meeting also will allow ODOT to explain what has been accomplished thus far and where ODOT is headed with this project, and allow the transportation department the chance to receive additional questions and comments from the council and community members who might be in attendance.

Alternative B/C-3A closes through traffic on Second Street from Jefferson to Monroe streets, while keeping Campbell Street and the railroad crossing at Jefferson Street open. In order to funnel traffic, changes will be made to access and parking facilities for commercial properties in the vicinity of the intersections of Second and Third streets at Jefferson Street.

Eight homes that front on Second Street between Monroe and Jefferson streets will be impacted. The car wash on Jefferson Street will also be impacted. The Gun and Archery and Video stores fronting on Second Street will lose some parking spaces, the sidewalk and some parking for CVS on the north side of Jefferson Street will also be affected.

Three additional businesses fronting on Second Street between Jefferson and Madison streets also will be impacted.

This plan will have less impact on the Kentucky Fried Chicken building and parking lot and will take fewer square feet of the outdoor display area of the Bob Clyse auto dealership.

Alternative B/C-3C will close access to Campbell Street from Jefferson Street, but Campbell remains open as a through street and the railroad crossing remains maintained.

Jefferson Street is closed to through traffic between Campbell and Second streets with bridge traffic distributed to Second and Third streets.

Bob Clyse’s dealership will lose the greatest number of square-feet to their outdoor display area.

Engineering consultants, ODOT reports, state that the B/C-3A alternative provides for a conventional, safer intersection designed for an efficient traffic flow as well as better sight distance and visibility. In addition,

the BC-3A alternative calls for a larger turning radius in its horizontal alignment and a smoother bridge curve on the Ironton approach.

The touchdown points in Kentucky for both bridge alternatives are the same. The bridge will touchdown just south Russell, Ky. at the U.S. Route 23 viaduct and Bellefonte Street.

Fuller said ODOT has completed step 5 of the National Environmental Policy Act and the department is ready to proceed to the next step which calls for presenting one bridge proposal to the Federal Highway Administration for approval. ODOT anticipates having completed the sixth step by summer Fuller said. She added that step seven calls for an Environmental Impact Statement and step eight calls for the Record of Decision from the feds. Fuller said ODOT hopes to have the go-ahead for the project by next fall. She added that the transportation department hopes to go to construction by 2005 and have a new bridge in place by 2008.