LIMA — The Interstate 75 construction project is wearing thin on the patience of some nearby residents as state contractors haul dump truck after dump truck loads of dirt through their once quiet neighborhood.
“The state has designated our roads as haul roads,” said Rob McPheron, who lives in the 700 block of Willard Avenue after watching the dump trucks drive by.
McPheron is one of the residents in the neighborhood to complain to the state and others about the truck traffic. McPheron, who is a truck driver, himself, said drivers are not stopping at stop signs putting people and pets at risk in the neighborhood.
“I’m worried about the kids and the animals,” McPheron said. “I want them to be careful and not race their engines.”
Ohio Department of Transportation spokeswoman Rhonda Pees said contractors are trying to be courteous to the Lost Creek neighborhood that sits east of Interstate 75 and north of state Route 309. ODOT also is monitoring the truck traffic for any problems, she said.
“We haven’t noticed anything that has caused us concern,” Pees said.
Pees stressed the situation is temporary. The hauling began Saturday and will last just more than two weeks, she said.
Contractors are hauling dirt from the Fourth Street ramp to the state Routes 117/309 interchange. Contractors are hauling 2,500 cubic yards of dirt a day, she said.
McPheron also expressed concern over possible damage the heavy trucks will cause to the roads, which recently were paved.
Pees said ODOT examined and recorded the condition of the roads before starting the job and will restore the roads to the original or better quality.
Neighbor Mark Miles, who lives in the 600 block of Willard Avenue, said redoing the roadways twice is a waste of taxpayer money.
Miles also was concerned about the trucks in the neighborhood. He has children he worries about, he said.
“They’re coming through a residential neighborhood with semi after semi,” Miles said.
Pees again apologizes for the inconvenience and said workers will try their best not to upset the neighborhood.
“We’re trying to keep the project going as best as we can. We realize it’s an inconvenience to those folks. This is the most convenient way of hauling the dirt to where it needs to be,” she said.
McPheron said he realizes the state needs to get the job done and contractors have a job to do but he just wants them to be more careful and courteous.
“It’s something I guess we have to live with,” he said. “I just want the drivers to stop at all stop signs and watch out for pedestrians and the kids and the animals.”