Construction season has kicked off on the Ohio Turnpike, and it will impact local drivers both on and off the highway.
Bridge work will be the focus of the construction in Fulton County. Bridges will be replaced near the fairgrounds and in Swanton.
Beginning this week, and ending Nov. 14, 2020, twin mainline bridges over an inactive railroad will be removed at mile post 34.2, just west of State Route 108, and replaced with new pavement at the location of the existing bridges.
Two lanes of traffic will be maintained in each direction at all times. This bridge removal is being performed to reduce future bridge maintenance costs.
Also beginning this week and ending Nov. 14, 2020, there will be construction on the bridge over State Route 108. It will be widened, and the deck replaced.
Customers traveling eastbound and westbound will encounter periodic single-lane closures. A minimum of one lane in each direction will be maintained at all times. Local traffic in the area may encounter minor delays due to the work.
The bridge deck on County Road 14 over the turnpike will also be replaced. Beginning Spring of 2019 and ending Nov. 14, 2020, motorists traveling in both directions on County Road 14 will encounter a full detour for a maximum of 120 days. The exact timing is not yet known.
The contractor for these three construction projects in Fulton County is Kokosing Construction Company, with a contract amount of $8.6 million.
Work has already begun in Swanton on a project that includes two bridge replacements and pavement widening. The bridges impacted are over Main Street (State Route 64) and Ai Creek, just to the west.
Work is scheduled to be completed by Dec. 9, 2019. The bridge decks will be widened and replaced on both mainline bridges, as well as widening of the pavement from mile post 46.5 to mile post 50.92.
The widening is being done in anticipation of construction of a new mainline toll plaza just east of Swanton.
Two lanes of traffic will be maintained on the mainline of the turnpike by first using the right lane and outside shoulder; then traffic will be switched to the new left lane and inside shoulder.
Main Street traffic under the bridge will maintain a minimum of one lane until approximately May 31, 2019, when it will be restored to two lanes, according to Brian Newbacher, Ohio Turnpike public information officer.
The job has been contracted to Miller Brothers Construction for $27.65 million.
The Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission anticipates spending as much as $198 million on projects throughout northern Ohio. Its focus will be on improving safety and the travel experience on the Ohio Turnpike.
“For the safety of our workers and customers, please drive like you work here and slow down in work zones,” said Executive Director Ferzan M. Ahmed, P.E. “As you approach those orange barrels, please picture a member of your family on the other side of them, and use appropriate care.”
Reach Drew Stambaugh at 419-335-2010