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Ohio Department of Transportation    Media Release
District 1    Kirk Slusher, P.E., District Deputy Director
1885 North McCullough St. • Lima, Ohio 45801
www.transportation.ohio.gov/dist1
Intersection of Kibby Street/Bellefontaine Avenue/Leonard Avenue to be improved, not reconstructed
Traffic signal upgrade, improved signage and pavement markings will improve traffic flow
LIMA (Thursday, May 10, 2012)Officials with the Ohio Department of Transportation say the intersection of Kibby Street, Bellefontaine Avenue and Leonard Avenue on Lima’s east side can be improved with an upgrade of the traffic signal, improved signing and pavement striping rather than by a complete reconstruction of the intersection.
Ohio Department of Transportation District 1 Deputy Director Kirk Slusher said the department had considered reconstructing the intersection to improve its operation. Among the options considered was reconfiguring the intersection into a roundabout. But through further analysis it was apparent that simple improvements to the intersection would be just as effective and far less costly.
Traffic traveling eastbound on Bellefontaine Avenue tends to back up at certain times. That is the main issue at the intersection that degrades its operation.
“We always begin a project by looking at the purpose and need--what is it that we’re trying to correct and will our chosen method do that? Through our analysis it became apparent we did not have an accident problem but more of a traffic flow and efficiency problem, both of which could be corrected with minor operational improvements,” said Slusher. “This is the most appropriate, immediate and cost-effective way of improving the operation of the intersection,” he said.
“We will continue to monitor the operation of the intersection and should additional modifications be needed in the future we will consider it at that time,” said Slusher.
 
The work at the intersection will be included with Phase 2 of the Interstate 75 reconstruction project, scheduled for 2013. During that phase of work, the Ohio 117/309/I-75 interchange will be reconstructed which will provide an opportunity to coordinate its signal operation with the Kibby/Bellefontaine intersection.
 
Phase 2 will reconstruct the interstate from Fourth Street to Ohio 81. It will also include a safety upgrade to Ohio 309 from Saratoga to the Bowman Road intersection. Phase 3, which will reconstruct the interstate from Fourth Street to the Auglaize County line, will begin in 2014.
 
Phase 1 of the Interstate 75 reconstruction project is currently under way with the replacement of the Fourth Street and Reservoir Road bridges over Interstate 75.
 
Ohio’s highways are essential to keeping and creating new jobs. With a mission to provide easy movement of people and goods from place to place, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is responsible for maintaining one of the largest transportation networks in the nation. Guided by ethical principles and accountability, ODOT works to improve safety, enhance travel and advance economic development. As a $2.8 billion enterprise, the department wisely invests in its core services of snow and ice removal, annual construction program and highway maintenance operations.
 
For more information contact:
Rhonda Pees, Public Information Officer, at (419) 999-6803
or email
D01.PIO@dot.state.oh.us