Last updated: August 24. 2013 7:09AM - 93 Views

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LIMA — Halfway through the seven-month reconstruction of Elida Road, the ODOT project appears about done on one side of the highway and poised to jump to the other.They're not quite there yet, but nearly so, state transportation officials said. And that means traffic patterns soon will change dramatically throughout the heavily traveled 1.5-mile construction zone. A date for the transition has not been made public.The Ohio Department of Transportation reported Friday the $7.2 million state Route 309 reconstruction that began in April is on schedule for completion in October. District 1 Public Information Officer Rhonda Pees said work is almost finished on the south side, along Elida Road's eastbound lanes. The road has been widened and concrete curbs, driveway aprons and drainage culverts have been installed.A new, one-block access road connecting Elida Road and American Avenue opened recently. Located next to the Verizon Wireless store, the new road lines up with the Lima Mall entrance beside the Firestone store. That entrance, which closed June 27 for realignment and reconstruction, reopened Friday evening. The result is a squared intersection with Elida Road. A left-turn lane there will become a U-turn lane later on during the project.One block west of the new road, Hartzler Road remains closed as the contractor relocates it to square up with the Lima Mall entrance between Hobby Lobby and the Golden Corral buffet. That mall entrance is being rebuilt as well. The majority of the work will be done under traffic, but there will be times when the entrance will be closed completely. Work on the drive is expected to be completed in a month.Other finishing touches for the eastbound lanes:•Work began this week on extending a culvert at Dug Run, the small creek near the GFS store. Work there won't affect traffic.•With curb work done between Arthur Avenue and the Wendy's restaurant, crews next week will spread asphalt along the curb.•Areas of exposed earth will get a final grading throughout the corridor.Soon construction will focus on the westbound lanes along Elida Road's northern edge, the side bordering the mall. Curbing, widening and drainage work await there, along with installation of a raised median barrier, turning lanes and new signs marking, among other things, where U-turns are and are not allowed.The reconstruction is designed to improve safety and traffic flow along the 1.5-mile stretch of five-lane highway between North Eastown Road and Robb Avenue, which ODOT has identified as a safety/congestion location in its Highway Safety Program listing. SET Inc., of Lowelville, is the ODOT contractor. Federal and state funds are paying for it.Crews are working in the zone most hours of the day and night. ODOT asks motorists to drive cautiously through the area and remain aware of equipment moving in and out of the work zone.You can comment on this story at www.limaohio.com.

Elida Road reconstruction poised to cross street

Elida Road reconstruction poised to cross street

Elida Road reconstruction poised to cross street
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