By Frank Lewis
The largest modern earthwork project to be constructed in the state of Ohio, will, over the next several months present a challenge to area motorists. As part of the Ohio 823 project in Scioto County, reconstruction of Pershing Avenue is set to begin, and this week contractors for the Portsmouth Gateway Group and the Ohio Department of Transportation will impart a temporary closure of the route.
On Thursday, Pershing Avenue, which is situated east of Ohio 335 in the Highland Bend area, will be closed at its junction with County Road 31 (Slocum Road) for clearing, relocation and reconstruction. The closure will be in effect for approximately 60 days, and while it is closed, local traffic will be detoured by way of Marne Avenue.
In addition to the closure of Pershing Avenue, Shumway Hollow Road remains closed between Ohio 335 and Swauger Valley Road for its relocation and interchange construction at Ohio 335, and blasting operations are under way throughout the corridor.
Motorists are reminded of the need for additional caution throughout the corridor, where crews and heavy equipment are moving in and out of the work zone.
Once all costs are factored into construction, and long-term maintenance of the Southern Ohio Veterans Memorial Highway, the roadway will cost the state an estimated $1.2 billion.
ODOT has entered into an agreement with the Portsmouth Gateway Group LLC, to construct the highway. Once construction is complete the group will maintain the roadway for 35 years.
ODOT officials said – in the spirit of a public-private partnership, the Ohio Department of Transportation and the Portsmouth Gateway Group are constructing the new Ohio 823, a 16-mile, four-lane, limited access highway from U.S. 23 at Lucasville to U.S. 52 at Sciotoville in Scioto County. The Southern Ohio Veterans Memorial Highway is the department’s first P3 project and the largest, modern earthwork project to be constructed in the state’s history.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.