Ohio Turnpike to Start $226 Million in Construction Projects
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Drivers are being reminded to travel with care through work zones on the Ohio Turnpike as $226 million in construction projects begin this month along the 241-mile toll road.
This year’s major road construction projects on the turnpike, which spans 13 counties in northern Ohio, include resurfacing and replacing pavement, renovating bridges and modernizing the turnpike’s toll collection system.
The Ohio Turnpike provides a strategic link between the East and Midwest. Last year, 12.8 million commercial vehicles traveled on the turnpike.
“With reduced lane widths and shifts, and narrow or no shoulders, we are urging motorists to drive safely in and around work zones by maintaining the posted speed limit, establishing a safe following distance, paying attention to the signs, avoiding distractions, and being prepared to slow down or stop,” said Chris Matta, chief engineer with the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission.
Summer’s almost here, but safety should always be in season! The @OSHP & #OHTPK are committed to improving roadway safety. Together, we can keep everyone safe on the road!
#WorkZoneSafety#OhioTurnpike#DriveSafepic.twitter.com/WlXe0YAmPX — Ohio Turnpike (@OhioTurnpike) March 24, 2023
He noted that the start of the construction season on the turnpike, which lasts from April to December, is a good time to “remind motorists that everyone plays a role in work zone safety.”
The Ohio State Highway Patrol will be conducting speed enforcement, including aerial enforcement by plane, in work zones throughout the Ohio Turnpike since speeding is a leading cause of accidents.
“Dangerous driving behaviors put our maintenance crews and construction workers at severe risk in work zones,” Matta added. “During peak times, up to 1,300 men and women can be working in various locations across the Ohio Turnpike. Together, our No. 1 priority is to get them home safely every day.”
In Williams County, a two-year resurfacing project will start in May to improve pavement from milepost 14.8 to milepost 27.5. Traffic will be reduced to one lane in each direction at night.
Construction in Fulton County involves completing work on two bridges, which includes the mainline bridges over State Route 109. Traffic is expected to return to normal in November when the work is completed.
The Ohio Turnpike’s largest bridge project in the last 20 years will start this summer and last until late 2025 to replace mainline bridges over Tinkers Creek at milepost 185.6 in Summit and Portage counties. Two lanes of traffic will be kept open throughout the construction project’s duration.
Workers perform pavement work along the Ohio Turnpike in Berea. (Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission)
Detours will go up in Lorain and Cuyahoga Counties as work starts on three overhead bridges, which include the Ohio Turnpike’s ramp bridge over State Route 57. Overhead bridges on Race Road and Stearns Road also will be closed with detours until the bridges are completed in the fall.
To limit driving delays, the commission aims to maintain two lanes of traffic in all three lane sections of the turnpike during peak travel times. Some single-lane zones will be necessary but most will occur during off-peak travel times or at night.
Projects on the turnpike also include modernizing the toll collection system. The first project this year will be to install weigh-in motion systems at milepost 209 in Trumbull County and then at milepost 236.5 in Mahoning County.
The new system includes placing pavement sensors to weigh trucks that are driving at highway speeds and to detect and enforce overweight vehicles on the turnpike.
Numerous toll plazas will have new infrastructure as well as the new hardware and software installations for collecting vehicle information for tolling.
Plans also include expanding electric vehicle charging stations to Indian Meadow (westbound) and Tiffin River (eastbound) in West Unity, Great Lakes (westbound) and Towpath (eastbound) service plazas in Broadview Heights, and the Mahoning Valley (westbound) and Glacier Hills (eastbound) service plazas in New Springfield.
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