Road projects announced

By Frank Lewis -

A project two years in the making is about to come to fruition. The funding has been set for the Reconstruction of Pershing Avenue in the Highland Bend area of Portsmouth. The purpose of the project is to improve Pershing Avenue for truck traffic.

Funding for the reconstruction of Pershing Avenue heading into Rocla Industries and KSA in Sciotoville includes funding from JobsOhio (DSA 629) in the amount of $302,754, Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) funding totaling $85,000 and $50,000 from the city of Portsmouth for a total cost of $437,754.

Jason Kester, director of the Southern Ohio Port Authority (SOPA), said Rocla committed to retaining 35 jobs in Sciotoville, adding eight new jobs over the next three years, and agreed to substantial investments in new equipment at the site.

Part of Pershing was relocated and widened as part of the Veteran’s Memorial Highway project. However, the rest of the street was still very narrow and trucks had a hard time passing each other without damaging property owner’s yards. Kester said this project will resolve that issue.

“ODOT, JobsOhio/ODSA, and the City all came together to make this happen,” Kester said. “It’s been in the works for nearly two-years and was identified as a need in our business retention visits with Rocla. A good project for everyone involved.”

Another project scheduled to begin in September is the Haverhill-Ohio Furnace Road project. And Ohio Development Services Agency grant is picking up 55 percent of the project at a cost of $330,000. Forty-one percent will come from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). in the amount of $250,000 and an ODOT Jobs and Commerce (ODOT J&C) grant totaling $80,500, 13 percent of the total cost.

In addition, the Scioto County Commissioners will provide eight percent of the cost at $50,000. One percent will come from the Fluor Opportunity Fund at $7,200 and Scioto County Engineer Darren LeBrun will provide $7,000 in in-kind services. The total funding for the project is $724,700. The total cost of the project is $724,619.

By Frank Lewis

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewisPDT.

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewisPDT.