Road safety projects coming

Published 9:11 pm Thursday, August 10, 2023

COLUMBUS — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced $61 million in funding on Monday for 27 new traffic safety projects in numerous counties across the state.

This round of funding from the Ohio Department of Transportation’s Highway Safety Improvement Program includes the installation of Restricted Crossing U-Turns, roundabouts, sidewalks, and other safety measures.

“Safe roadways are essential to connecting people and businesses across Ohio,” DeWine said. “ With the investments made in these projects, we will help save countless lives on Ohio’s roads.”

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As part of the program, 17 new roundabouts will be added in Ohio. DeWine’s office said roundabouts are a proven design to reduce crashes by more than 48 percent, and more importantly serious injury and deadly crashes by nearly 80 percent when compared to a signalized intersection. 

These roundabouts are designed with large trucks and farm equipment in mind and will include a “truck apron” in the middle that allows larger vehicles to ride up over a curb as they navigate through.

Other safety measures include a roadway reconfiguration, known as a road diet. This seeks to reallocate the cross-section of an existing roadway to better serve all modes of travel – including walking, biking, and driving.

“Our top mission is to ensure that our roadways are built to be as safe as possible. The measures we’re implementing with this program further that mission not only on roadways that ODOT maintains, but those maintained by local partners too,” said ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks.

The projects were selected by a committee made up of ODOT staff with a background in funding and program management, safety analysis, traffic operations, roadway design, and highway management.