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U.S. 224 interchange with Interstate 75 on funded project list
Project is a potential candidate for turnpike money
LIMA (Thursday, August 1, 2013)A new interchange at U.S. 224 and Interstate 75 in Findlay is moving forward with the approval of the Transportation Review Advisory Council (TRAC) and could be paid for with Turnpike funds. Construction of the $12.5 million interchange is part of Gov. John R. Kasich’s statewide “Jobs and Transportation Plan” and is scheduled to begin construction next year.
 
“This is the first of several transportation investments which will bring huge returns down the road to not only the 83rd House district but to all of Ohio,” said Rep. Robert Sprague, R-Findlay.
 
“I live in that area of Findlay and I’m excited that this project is going forward and will be a benefit to the greater Findlay area,” said Senator Cliff Hite, R-Findlay.
 
“The fact that this project has been selected by TRAC to possibly receive Turnpike funds demonstrates that Findlay is a major transportation and economic center in northwest Ohio,” said Lydia Mihalik, mayor of the city of Findlay.
 
The interchange is the first of several projects along the Interstate 75 corridor which will be reconstructed and widened to three lanes in each direction from Findlay to Toledo in the coming years.
 
The reconstruction and widening of Interstate 75 from south of Findlay to County Road 99 also includes the reconstruction of the U.S. 68/Ohio 15 interchange and the Lima Avenue interchange with U.S. 68/Ohio 15. The $150 million project is currently scheduled for construction in 2017. Because of the additional funding created by the Turnpike bonding, ODOT is developing the project to be ready for construction as early as 2015.
 
“We’re entering a very exciting era in transportation in northwest Ohio,” said  Kirk Slusher, Ohio Department of Transportation District 1 deputy director. “The U.S. 224 interchange reconstruction is the start of several major improvements which will modernize the highway system in our region,” he said.
 
ODOT officials will present certain projects for funding to the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission in August. The TRAC will then vote to finalize the list in September. Construction for some of the approved projects could begin as early as next year.
 
The nine-member TRAC was established by the Ohio Revised Code in 1997 and provides guidance for developing a project selection process for ODOT’s largest investments of more than $12 million.
 
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.
 
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For more information contact:
Rhonda Pees, Public Information Officer, at (419) 999-6803
or email
D01.PIO@dot.state.oh.us