FREDERICKTOWN — Fredericktown’s streetscape project is expected to be completed by the 2024 Tomato Show.
The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) project, begun in 2018 at a cost of more than $1.5 million, is about to hit the ground running. Contractor Smith Paving is expected to begin preliminary work in mid-March 2024, weather permitting, Fredericktown Village Administrator Bruce Snell said.
Construction will begin on the east side of Main Street (Ohio 95) where Mill Street and North Main Street split and go to East Sandusky Street.
All sidewalks will be removed and widened along with streetlights, which will be replaced with a four-way stop. Thirty-eight trees will also be planted throughout Main Street, Snell added.
The existing diagonal parking spots will also be replaced by parallel parking spots.
The bid for Smith Paving is $1,595,404, Snell said.
The inclusion of a four way stop instead of traffic lights was because of ODOT’s traffic study that found the amount of traffic in the intersection didn’t justify lights, Snell said.
“That’s probably why we got the (ODOT) transportation alternative grant because they (ODOT) thought it’d be much safer with parallel parking and with stop signs instead of traffic lights,” Snell said. “They thought they’d be substantially safer for pedestrians.”
The streetscape project is being paid fully by ODOT’s transportation alternative program (TAP) grant, Snell said, which is awarded based on creating accessible forms of transportation.
“We wanted to improve connectivity for all generations,” Snell said. “Whether it was a parent pushing a stroller or whether it’s a senior citizen (…) no matter who we wanted to improve connectivity downtown and accessibility the best we could.”
The timeline from 2018 to 2023 has been filled with completing design for the project and communicating/collaborating with the community and ODOT employees.
“We’ve done everything we could to keep the community involved and just ensuring that we’re not missing anything that we regret not doing later,” Snell said.
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