Officials seek ODOT funding for road projects

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 4, 2013

More than $1.2 million in funding for road improvement projects and highway expansion is being sought by the county’s Transportation Improvement District.

At its quarterly meeting on Tuesday the TID approved making applications to the Ohio Department of Transportation for eight projects. The largest request is for the proposed Chesapeake Bypass.

“We asked ODOT if we could help partner in that project,” Lawrence County Engineer Doug Cade said. “No. 1, if we get funding to assist ODOT to construct, it is that much closer for that project under construction.”

Email newsletter signup

ODOT has begun right-of-way acquisition for the construction of a connector highway from the east end of Chesapeake to the existing Proctorville Bypass. To assist in that the TID is requesting $250,000 from ODOT.

“ODOT has a program that competitively funds TIDs throughout the state,” Cade said. “It is roughly $3.5 million in funding assistance.”

Because of the way the legislation setting up the program was written, ODOT cannot directly take the funding. Instead the TID must apply for it and then transfer it to ODOT if it wishes.

“There are only a couple of ways TIDS can be funded,” Cade said. “County entities, villages, cities can put money into the TID. TID could request a license plate fee. The only other way is apply for the grant. This grant is specifically targeted for the TIDs. It is the TID’s decision to apply for money to help ODOT purchase property to move that project along. Every dime counts.”

The other projects the TID wants ODOT funds for are six intersection upgrades and a drainage project in Chesapeake.

Five of the intersection projects are for redesign to reduce the number of accidents at each site. They are State Route 93 and County Road 26 at Rock Hill High School, $80,000; U.S. 52 and County Road 410 or Walmart way, $150,000; U.S. 52 and County Road 276 or Sandusky Road, $100,000; U.S. 52 and County Road 120 or Burlington-Macedonia Road, $100,000; and U.S. 52, County Road 1, County Road 15, $80,000.

An application will also be made for intersection upgrades at Solida Road going into Collins Avenue that runs beside The Point industrial park.

“With Fedex coming in there will be a lot more truck traffic,” Cade said. “We need to do intersection improvement to make it easy to enter and exit Collins Avenue.”

The TID has requested $250,000 for planning and design and partial construction. The last request was for $200,000 for the drainage project along Rockwood Avenue, designed by ODOT.

“They are waiting for construction money to fix the drainage issue from the slip (on Rockwood) back toward the village on the east side,” Cade said.

All TID requests are for 10 percent of the total project cost.