U.S. 250 overhaul highlighted

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By AMY GAREIS

News-Herald Staff Writer

CADIZ – The temporary closure of a major artery in Harrison County will cause some headaches for motorists, but it is being called the best option while the route undergoes an overhaul.

Myriad speakers were on hand during a dinner session on Wednesday with the county engineer, township trustees and fiscal officers. More than 100 people gathered at Wallace Lodge Wednesday as Ohio Department of Transportation District 11 officials said a portion of U.S. 250 is due for improvements but detours would be needed while the $6.26 million upgrade is underway. A 2.4-mile section east of Tappan Lake from Mizer Road to Milliken Road will be shut down for a 45-day period starting in September, but it should be reopened before the Thanksgiving holiday. Shelly and Sands Construction was contracted to undertake the task at a cost of $6,260,427 with the timeline estimated from June 1 to May 15 of next year.

Temporary traffic signals will be placed at the intersection of Ohio 9 and U.S. 22 with more at Ohio 151 and U.S. 250 plus the two ramps at Cadiz. Leaders said the nearly 10-mile detour was needed to complete the upgrade and the closure enables the job to finish quickly and with better quality.

“Why are we closing U.S. 250? Because we couldn’t figure out any other way,” said Jim Graham, district highway management administrator. He noted the detour ran from Ohio 9 at Cadiz to Ohio 151 to Scio and Bowerston, eventually reconnecting at U.S. 250 past the lake. “It’s the only detour we felt comfortable using.”

Graham cited continued traffic use and potential lake-effect erosion in the consistent cracking of the surface, but the latest process will grind down the trouble spot and add slip-form concrete pavement.

“It is what we call “poor-performing pavement.” Everything that’s been done to the road for the last 20 years has not been successful. This is brand new to us. We’re hopeful it will be a success and use it for the corridor. The road will be closed for 45 days, and if we tried to do the same work at half-width, you’re looking at traffic jams for two years. It’s beyond maintenance,” he explained. “The contractors will do repairs and maintenance through the summer and then we will shut down and tear out the road. I guarantee I will never see another [new road there] in my lifetime. There is a minimum 25-year lifespan.”

Chris Wood, county ODOT manager, gave an overview of other Harrison projects. About $10.5 million is being spent on upgrades, including chip-and-seal along Ohio 342 and 258 at Freeport, a culvert replacement along Ohio 799 at the Clendening Lake area and slip repairs at the Jewett corporation limit. Ideas for next year include paving Ohio 9 from New Athens to Cadiz, but he also appreciated the cooperation of townships to keep areas maintained and alert ODOT of problem sites.

Wood also touched upon the Tappan project, saying a section of the detour at Ohio 9 near Cadiz would be improved prior to the U.S. 250 project’s start date.

“It’s a project they’ve needed for years,” he said of the Tappan plan.

District 11 Director Richard Bible said the construction season would be the largest in Ohio’s history, with about $4 billion in projects occurring statewide and stimulus funding spurring improvements and job creation.

County Engineer Rob Sterling, who led the gathering, informed the crowd of improvements through his office.

Other speakers included Smithfield Township Trustee Terry Bell, who also serves as president of the Jefferson County Township Association, regarding legislation to help townships solve road problems.

Victoria Beale, assistant director of ODOT’s Local Technical Assistance Program, also updated officials on available services and resources through LTAP. Greg DiDonato, executive director of the Ohio Mid-East Government Association, discussed free grant-writing services for the community. DiDonato said one program enabled the Stock Township to receive $87,000 in grants and loans for maintenance equipment and encouraged leaders to seek OMEGA’s services for financial assistance.

Additionally, County Township Association Vice President Dan Henry announced a spring banquet May 27 at the Moorefield Township Fire Hall and an HCTA meeting on June 8 at the Nottingham Township Building.

5 COMMENTS

  1. It just seems unreal that 2.4 miles is going to cost 6.26 million dollars. How many employess will be on this job while it is being done, how many of those workers will be standing around watching a couple of the workers doing all the work?

  2. My reason for asking above question is, about 2 or 3 years ago, State workers redid some of 250, while being stopped in traffic I counted 12 state vehicles parked and 13 state workers standing around while 2 state workers was on the rollers rolling the blacktop.
    Where was my camera when I needed it?

  3. As a daily driver of US 250, I must say that this repair is DESPERATELY needed. I won’t mind 45 days of detour if the finished product produces a smooth roadway that doesn’t damage our vehicles.

    Shelly & Sands DID A TERRIBLE JOB DIRECTING TRAFFIC WHEN THEY REPAVED THE NORTH END OF 250 at Uhrichsville/Dennsion in 2009, they had lane closures for 25 -35 minutes long waiting just to move 5 feet !! They didn’t wear safety vests and it was hard to tell WHICH WORKER WAS DIRECTING TRAFFIC. KEEP AN EYE ON THOSE WORKERS, THEY ARE NOT THE SMARTEST TOOLS IN THE SHED !!

  4. The state workers did it again. May 14th. Leaving Cadiz to get to 250 I went to the ramp to get on Rt.22 so I could go and get on 250. After going up the ramp a distance, there was trucks sitting there waiting their turn to do whatever they had to do to work on the berm. There was no signs, no flaggers at beginning of the ramp. But up where the trucks was stopped, was a few state trucks parked on left side of the ramp over on the berm, and there was enough state workers just standing there doing nothing but talking, whereas one of them could of at least been at the beginning of the ramp off of 151 flagging or letting people know the ramp would be closed for a period of time while waiting for these trucks to unload whatever they were carrying. By then there was other vehicles behind me, so we all had to wait while the other one’s that came on the ramp back up before we could get back off the ramp so we could go a different direction to get to 250. So thank you state workers for causing me to be late for my appointment in Dover. Also along the highway noticed where these hired contractors was weedeating along the guard rails. What’s wrong with putting these state workers to work and do the weedeating instead of having to hire that work to be done, beings these state workers doesn’t have anything better to do than stand around one of the many state trucks and doing nothing but talking? Who is in charge of these state workers in Harrison County? Maybe we need a change in who is in charge.

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