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ODOT: Stim Jobs Spur Economic Growth in Ohio

Mon December 21, 2009 - Midwest Edition
Linda J. Hutchinson

Three of three major American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) Transportation Stimulus Projects in north central Ohio have been completed in 2009, with one reaching completion a year ahead of schedule, according to the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT).

ODOT District 3 will award a total of 32 stimulus-related projects, worth an estimated $30 million, in the north central Ohio region which includes the counties of Ashland, Crawford, Erie, Huron, Lorain, Medina, Richland and Wayne, according to its Web site. Projects worth $14.3 million have been awarded in 2009.

Completed a year ahead of schedule, the U.S. 42 Bridge Rehabilitation Project in Ashland County included the rehabilitation of a 160-ft. (48 m) bridge over Claremont Avenue in the City of Ashland, south of Beaney Avenue. The rehabbed bridge deck is 5,737-sq.-ft. (532 sq m).

“This project was originally scheduled for an October 15, 2010, completion, but through teamwork with the contractor and the City of Ashland, we’re opening this road in November 2009. That might not be a record, but that’s fast for any project,” said ODOT District 3 Deputy Director John Hart. The ribbon cutting event officially opening the bridge was held on Nov. 24.

The project was funded with a 100 percent ARRA Stimulus Investment of $1.3 million. The contractor is Cuyahoga Bridge of Seville, Ohio.

U.S. 42 in Ashland Country is an integral part of “multi-modal connectivity,” according to an ODOT press release. “Its completion will enable businesses in the area to continue to ship and receive goods and materials along U.S. 42 from Mansfield, Richland County, and Interstate 71.”

Located near the south end of the City of Ashland Bypass, U.S. 42 provides “good connectivity to Interstate 71, the Ashland County Airport and nearby Mansfield Lahm Airport, and nearby rail lines from Mansfield reach to points around Ohio,” according to the press release.

Brian Stacy, public information officer of ODOT district three said, “The City of Ashland’s willingness to enable the contractor and ODOT to use lane closures underneath [U.S.] 42 in 2009… meaning that we had a number of lane closures of Beaney Rd. and Claremont Rd., enabled the work to be completed nearly a year earlier than planned.”

“The City [of Ashland] allowed Claremont Rd to be closed completely, and rather than single lane closures we did complete closures,” said Stacy. “U.S. 42 was also completely closed to traffic, which allowed completion in 2009. When you look at our detour road, it’s relatively short, but it’s right there at the City of Ashland.”

According to Stacy, some painting and other minor work remains to be done, but will be completed in the spring. The contractor will complete all remaining work by the original October 2010 deadline.

Also in Ashland County, S.R. 89 between County Road 2000 and Township Road 1922 in Mohican Township opened on Nov. 12 following a bridge replacement funded by ARRA. A new three-span slab bridge over the Jerome Fork of the Mohican River has been completed by Mosser Construction of Freemont, Ohio, for $374,345, according to Stacy.

On Nov. 5, ODOT completed the S.R. 302 ARRA bridge replacement project in Perry Township between County Road 175 and Township Road 63. Stanley-Miller of East Sparta, Ohio, was the contractor for this $418,163.64 project to replace a 3-span steel beam bridge over the Muddy Fork of the Mohican River, according to ODOT’s Web site.

ODOT plans to spend its $774 million in ARRA funding in nearly every Ohio county. According to its Web site, “based on federal calculations for transportation investment, an estimated 21,257 jobs will be created or retained through these stimulus projects, with thousands of additional jobs likely to be spurred by the economic development that will occur as a result of the projects.”

Ashland County has a jobless rate of 6.6 percent and an annual average income of $25,468, according to ODOT’s Web site. ODOT has estimated that the U.S. 42 project resulted in creating or retaining jobs in the Ashland County community sooner than expected.

“In October alone, Cuyahoga Bridge and its subcontractors created or retained 40 employees and a payroll of $50,581.45,” ODOT said.

For information on all ARRA projects in Ohio, visit

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