Ohio Awarded $2.4 Million Grant for Roadway Infrastructure
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The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration has awarded a $2.4 million grant to improve roadway infrastructure in an industrial corridor in eastern Ohio.
The project, 54 miles east of Akron, will enable the Mahoning Avenue industrial corridor to have critical updates to its roadway infrastructure in the Jackson Township’s main commercial and industrial zone. At the same time, it will facilitate the safe transportation of goods and services to national and global markets through the adjacent Interstate 76 and Ohio Turnpike.
The project will serve freight in the Youngstown-Warren area moving on I-76 and I-80 as well as on the Norfolk Southern and CSX railroads.
Mahoning is among five counties experiencing incremental daily truck traffic carrying chemicals, pharmaceuticals and plastics, according to the state’s freight plan, and also is seeing more trucks carrying energy products on I-76/80 between Youngstown and Toledo.
“This EDA investment will provide the infrastructure to facilitate a safe and efficient transportation system to serve the region’s manufacturing and energy sectors,” Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo noted recently.
She added that President Joe Biden “is committed to supporting communities across the country as they work to grow their local economies.”
Located on one of nation’s former largest steel-producing regions, the Mahoning County project was among 23 investments totaling $12.5 million and matched by $12.1 million in local funds awarded from Dec. 14 to Jan. 12 by EDA, with most projects paying for economic partnership planning projects and technical assistance rather than transportation infrastructure.
EDA’s mission is to lead federal economic development by promoting competitiveness and helping regions across the country grow and succeed economically.
Commenting that EDA is glad to support Mahoning County improve its vital roadway infrastructure for the eastern Ohio region, Alejandra Castillo, assistant secretary of commerce for economic development, said, “This project will enhance the primary commercial and industrial zone in Mahoning County to spur business and job growth.”
The federal funds will receive a matching $2.9 million in local investment as well as leverage an estimated $5 million in private investment. EDA expects the project to save 67 jobs and create 75 jobs in the rural area of northwest Mahoning County.
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown said, “Ohio communities face a heavy burden when they have to pay to upgrade local infrastructure. Thanks to this investment, Mahoning County will be able to repair critical roadways while creating jobs and attracting new investment.”
Brown’s office stated that the EDA grant will enable roadway upgrades, bridge replacements, drainage enhancements and other improvements to better position the corridor as an attractive location for job growth and business expansion.
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