State transportation officials approved closing a portion of Venice Road, or U.S. 6, by George Street for 30 days so construction workers can complete the west end overpass.
The 500-foot construction zone — forcing all non-emergency traffic to follow detours around the area — should shut down by Aug. 26. It would then re-open in late September.
Motorists can still access homes, neighborhoods and businesses in this area during the construction period.
By Aug. 26, Tiffin Avenue (Ohio 101) should re-open. It has been closed for several weeks because of the construction.
The detour forces traffic traveling:
• East to take Ohio 2 and get off at the Ohio 101 exit to access Fremont Avenue (U.S. 6)
• West to take Ohio 101 and access Ohio 2 to get back onto Venice Road (U.S. 6).
While the 16,000 vehicles trekking the Venice Road corridor each day include a handful of fire trucks and police cruisers, state officials are allowing emergency vehicles to travel the area.
“Fire and EMS apparatus will be able to navigate through the construction zone,” Sandusky fire Chief Paul Ricci said. “Even though some areas may not be accessible by the general public, (the state transportation department and the on-site construction company) have always worked with us to maintain emergency routes.” Said Sandusky police Chief John Orzech: “We will be able to get through the area if an emergency situation arises. This is the final leg of a great improvement for vehicular traffic on the west end.”
The $11.4 million overpass project should streamline traffic on Sandusky’s west side by allowing motorists to bypass railroad crossings and avoid lengthy delays. The overpass will connect Tiffin Avenue and George Street, running parallel to Venice Road.City taxpayers will pay about $575,000 of the project’s total cost, with Norfolk Southern railroad matching that amount. State funds will cover the remainder.
The project is slated for completion by July 2014.