RYAN SCOTT OTTNEY
PDT Staff Writer
NEW BOSTON — Work could resume next week on the Ohio 139 road project in New Boston, which has been on-and-off hold for nearly two months.
The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) closed Ohio 139 in New Boston on March 5 to begin a 180-day slip repair project. After the hillside project is complete, ODOT will resurface 139 between the New Boston corporation line at Blaine Avenue to U.S. 52 East. During the resurfacing project, 139 will be open to one-lane traffic only.
The $1.6 million contract was awarded to Complete General Construction, in Columbus, with a target completion of fall 2012. In the meantime, ODOT has detoured traffic on U.S. 23 and U.S. 52, re-routing traffic far in advance to Ohio 335 to avoid traffic on Ohio 139. The village of New Boston also set up local detours on Oak, Cedar, and Maple streets, causing lengthy traffic tie-ups on Lakeview Avenue.
The road project was placed on temporary hold in late April after steel beams used in the retaining wall began failing beneath the weight of the hillside. The state ordered a redesign to correct the problem, and the crews went back to work in May. The redesigned features, however, did not work as well as planned, and the project has remained on hold for about three weeks for another redesign.
At the New Boston Village Council meeting Tuesday evening, Village Administrator Steve Hamilton told council that work could resume as soon as next week if the new project plans and cost are approved by ODOT Director Jerry Wray. The cost of the new project design, Hamilton said, is an additional $160,000.
“Only the director can sign off on that much money, but it should be signed off on this week and they’ll be back either Monday of next week, or Wednesday at the latest,” Hamilton said.
He said the redesign should not delay the project, which he expects to be complete in October.
Ryan Scott Ottney can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 235, or firstname.lastname@example.org.