The point hasn’t been lost on city officials, who sent emails urging state transportation officials to improve the overpass area for motorists. The Register obtained the emails through a records request.
City planners want to add road and directional signs on the route, as well as new signs to direct drivers toward downtown and other area landmarks, including Cedar Point. They also want to install a guardrail in a few locations where commuters are driving over curbs and onto grass to access roads.
Officials are also considering placing a guardrail where Tiffin Avenue and Wilson Street meet.
Tiffin Avenue is no longer a direct route to the more western segments of Venice Road, and the triangle-shaped residential area hemmed in by Wilson Street, the sliced-and-diced portion of Tiffin Avenue and West Perkins Avenue is not accessible from the main portions of Tiffin Avenue or Venice Road.
Motorists frustrated by the change are actually driving over the curb, instead of taking the proper route.
“The issue that was brought up is caused by impatient drivers who don’t want to drive the correct route, due to the Wilson and Wilbert streets area now being cut off to the north,” Sandusky police Chief John Orzech said. “Our officers are aware of the situation and will continue to monitor the area.”
With some drivers making their own detours, residents are worried about safety.
“People are so used to going straight,” Wilbert Street resident Anna Dunn said. “Now that they can’t do it anymore, they get all mad. Sometimes they go right over the curbs (to get to Venice Road).”
State transportation employees met with city officials this past week to determine possible solutions, but there’s no timeframe for any possible fixes.
The overpass debuted about a month ago. Sandusky taxpayers contributed $575,000 for the project, with the remainder coming from state coffers and Norfolk Southern.
A reader recently called the Register to ask about walking and bicycling on the overpass. State transportation spokeswoman Christine Myers provided a response: “There were no sidewalks built in this project. We cannot recommend walking in this area of roadway,” Myers said. “As this road is not limited access, bicycling is permitted.” The reader also asked if officials plan to install lights along the overpass. “Lighting for this area would be a decision that is made at the city level,” Myers said.