Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Construction Notes from the 2018 Toledo Region Transportation Summit

All presentations from the 2018 Toledo Region Transportation Summit are posted on www.tmacog.org: http://www.tmacog.org/Summit.htm

Mike Gramza, Ohio Department of Transportation

• The Diverging Diamond in Perrysburg was completed in 2017. Gramza said, “In my 30-year career, the most significant improvement in traffic.”

• The Waterville Bridge estimates came in under budget. The new bridge over the Maumee River will be built right next to the existing bridge and the road will be re-aligned to the new bridge. The old one will be demolished after the new one goes into service.

• The extensive re-building of the entire Phillips-Berdan-Willys Park area will be completed this year. Three of the five planned roundabouts are complete. The additional two will be done in 2018. This whole project will change access to I-75, includes bridges, re-route roads in addition to the roundabouts. The City of Toledo says that this region reflects a $30 million investment

• In Bowling Green, ODOT is partnering on a new gateway to the city. There will be two new roundabouts, moving a waterline and pump station and building a bridge. The bridge will have orange beams, special lighting and signage. That project will starting September, 2018 and be complete in 12 months.

• A new Dorr St. intersection with I-475 has been a priority since 1996. Construction will begin in 2018.

• A new ODOT initiative is DriveOhio. This program assists the development of systems supporting autonomous vehicles. Director of DriveOhio, Jim Barna, says that “It's going to be here sooner than we believe.”

Chris Matta, Ohio Turnpike & Infrastructure Commission

• The replacement and resurfacing of roads and bridges takes up 75% of the budget of the Ohio Turnpike & Infrastructure Commission.

• The Ohio Turnpike is well-positioned to be a laboratory for autonomous vehicles. It is 241-mile straight line corridor. Fiber optic is already buried in anticipation of autonomous vehicle service. There are sensors already operating with real-time traffic and weather transmitted to vehicles. Software and data exchange protocols have started. The turnpike is pleased to address the number of accidents on its road and anticipates that autonomous vehicles will reduce accidents and injuries.

Dave Dysard, City of Toledo

• Upcoming projects include the next phase of Bancroft St. rebuild, from Secor Rd. east to Perth St. This area will remain two lanes in each direction. The first phase, from Perth to Parkside, was a “road diet” adding a center lane, bike lanes, and reducing car traffic to one lane in each direction.

• The Cliffs on Front Street is in partnership with the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority. This will include two roundabouts on the East Side construction site. Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. has selected the City of Toledo to be the site of a new hot briquetted iron (HBI) manufacturing facility. In a statement, they said, “riverfront property with multi-modal logistics and competitive utility rates were major factors in their location decision. The company will construct a $700 million facility at the Ironville Terminal the Port of Toledo. Cliffs will create 130 new jobs in the manufacturing sector and support 1200 construction jobs over two years.” Read more: http://toledo.oh.gov/news/cliffs-natural-resources-inc-to-locate-in-toledo/

• There will be intense construction in downtown Toledo as state routes are resurfaced and Toledo Waterways Initiative improves sewer separation downtown.

• Bikeway projects in the region will include the Overland Trail, from Ottawa Park to Joe E. Brown Park. It will take a jog through Woodlawn Cemetery, which is an arboretum and bird sanctuary.

• An additional four miles of the Chessie Circle Trail will be paved.

• The downtown Toledo bikeshare project will be completed in 2018. Plans call for a fleet of 100 bikes distributed among 18 stations. There will also be 150 smart technology bike racks. The bikes are 3- or 8-speed models on a step-through frame with built-in keypads that will lock and unlock the bikes. GPS systems will track where the bikes are within the system. TARTA will be in charge of bike maintenance and moving bikes around to keep the stations stocked.

Jim Gee, TARTA
• In a major change affecting downtown traffic patterns and real estate, TARTA plans to eliminate downtown loop lanes and remove the loop bus stations in the area. They are moving operations to the former Goodwill building on Cherry St., which will be re-configured as a central station. Gee says that the station will include better facilities for riders including rest areas and food.

Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments | www.tmacog.org