Decade-long I-75 modernization ends early, nearly $1M under budget

Published: Thursday, September 22, 2016 @ 5:09 AM
Updated: Thursday, September 22, 2016 @ 9:04 PM

“Malfunction junction” was declared dead Thursday at a celebratory completion of the I-75 Modernization Project, which state transportation officials say ended one year early and nearly $1 million under budget.

Officials hope the completion of the $306 million, four-and-a-half mile road project will improve safety and ease decades of frustration with the heavily-traveled downtown stretch that an estimated 128,000 cars and trucks travel each day.

Rob Griffith, Federal Highway Administration assistant division administrator, said the four-mile stretch of highway replaced in the modernization project formerly saw an average of 325 accidents per year.

“Right now, we’ve just finished this project and we’re seeing roughly 225 crashes per year, so we’ve seen a decrease already of 100 crashes per year,” Griffith said.

The project relied on the use of monetary incentives to encourage the contractors to complete the work ahead of schedule. An ODOT spokeswoman could not immediately confirm whether Kokosing Construction received a $3 million bonus for the completion, but officials indicated the incentives were a major part of getting the construction work done ahead of schedule.

“Waving extra dollars at contractors, I think they sharpen their pencils, they get their A-team on board and they march ahead and get it done,” said Randy Chevalley, ODOT District 7 deputy director. “They’ve got that next project they want to do. They’re in business to make money.”

Leaders from the Ohio Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission and other local agencies and governments were on hand for the ceremony Thursday morning, which included a ribbon cutting.

The project was built in three segments:

  • Phase 1A began in October 2007 and saw the reconstruction of the I-75 and state Route 4 interchange, including the elimination of a sharp curve and left lane ramps. The Main Street exit was upgraded and three continuous lanes were built from Main Street to Stanley Avenue. Kokosing Construction completed the project in fall 2011 at a cost of $122 million.
  • Phase 1B broke ground in March 2010 and built a three-lane stretch from Edwin C. Moses Boulevard to Fifth Street and rebuilt portions of the existing U.S. Route 35 interchange ramps. The Ruhlin Company completed the project in fall 2013 at a cost of $58 million.
  • Phase 2, the final segment of the project, kicked off in spring 2013 to connect Phases 1A and 1B by constructing three continuous lanes between the complete phases. The project included the reconstruction of 12 bridges and eliminated left lane entrances and exits. The project was completed by Kokosing Construction at a cost of $126 million.

Chevalley noted construction will continue in the area around the completed I-75 stretch. That work includes the continuation of construction on the U.S. 35 portions of the interchange with I-75, technically a separate project, and the eventual replacement of the I-75 bridges near Edwin C. Moses Boulevard and Wagoner Ford Road.

But for the project at hand, ODOT officials focused on celebrating the accomplishment alongside several dozen construction workers. Randy Winals, a labor foreman with Kokosing Construction, said he was proud to know his work is “going to be here for a long time.”

“All of us guys working together, we talk about that kind of thing — ‘What’s this going to look like for everyone?’” said Winals, dressed in a hard hat and reflective gear. “I’m very proud of it and everyone who works on it should be proud of it.”

News Center 7’s Mike Campbell contributed reporting.

FIRST REPORT

The decade-long modernization project of Interstate 75 through downtown Dayton will officially come to an end Thursday.

ODOT said the project was an investment of over $300 million, and was constructed an entire year ahead of schedule and below budget.

“The newly constructed interstate creates a smoother, less congested commute for motorists, as well as new ramps in and out of the Dayton area,” ODOT District 7 Public Information Officer Mandi Dillon said in a release issued earlier this week.

ODOT will hold a project completion ceremony Thursday at 10:30 a.m. on Second Street in downtown Dayton.

EARLIER: I-75 construction project in Dayton to be finished this year

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’Enhanced risk’ for severe weather issued for tonight

Published: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 @ 5:17 AM

The Storm Prediction Center has issued an “enhanced risk” report that would indicate strong to severe storms are possible late tonight into the overnight.

RELATED: Severe Weather: Slight vs. Enhanced Risk

  • The real threat for strong to severe storms arrives tonight, mainly after midnight
  • Damaging winds, heavy rain and hail are main threats
  • Scattered showers and storms possible throughout Tuesday during the day

TODAY/TONIGHT: As of 11:30 a.m. the western part of the Miami Valley, including the city of Dayton has been placed under an enhanced risk for severe storms later tonight into tomorrow morning.   


Scattered showers and storms are possible at any point during the day today. The real threat for strong to severe storms arrives tonight, mainly after midnight with damaging winds, heavy rain and hail. The threat for a spin-up tornado is not out of the question and will be monitored throughout the night.

WEDNESDAY: Some storms may become strong with wind, hail and minor flooding the main threat. Highs will be in the low 60s early with temperatures dropping late afternoon and evening behind our front. Some passing rain or snow showers possible at night. Gusty winds over 30 mph possible during the day and night.

THURSDAY: Cooler day in the low 40s. Some passing rain or snow showers late afternoon. Passing snow showers at night.

FRIDAY: Temperatures start in the 20s. Coldest bus stop forecast of the week. Flurries will likely linger especially in the eastern Miami Valley for the first half of the day. Highs in the upper 30s.

SATURDAY: Partly cloudy, and warmer than normal with highs around 50.

Related

Wet commute, strong storms Feb 28, 2017 - 5:38 AM

5 different types of cancer treatments

Published: Wednesday, February 22, 2017 @ 8:10 AM
Updated: Wednesday, February 22, 2017 @ 8:10 AM

5 different types of cancer treatments

As people try to wrap their brains around the reality of a life-altering cancer diagnosis,they also must begin considering plans for treatment. It’s often a lot of information to absorb and understand and completely normal to feel overwhelmed and confused.  

“The type of treatment a patient will receive depends on the type of cancer they have and the stage of the cancer,” explained Mridula Reddy, MD, hematologist/oncologist with Dayton Physicians Network. Here is a guide to some of the most common cancer treatments currently available and their potential side effects, as well as exciting new therapies on the horizon.

New Oakwood stadium opens for team practices; dedication on schedule

Published: Monday, February 27, 2017 @ 9:42 PM
Updated: Monday, February 27, 2017 @ 11:31 PM

New Oakwood stadium opens for team practices; dedication on schedule

Oakwood's nearly completed Lane Stadium is now open for team practices as construction continues on the new $4 million stadium complex

The stadium hosted Oakwood High School's girls and boys lacrosse team practices Monday in the complex's first official use, Oakwood school district spokeswoman Traci Hale said. 

She said a March 11 dedication is on schedule as construction crews work to install a regulation eight-lane track and press box. 

The track at the stadium located in the Old River Sports Complex is scheduled to be installed during the first week of April during Oakwood school's spring break. 

Hale said a press box is due for completion at the end of March. 

The mostly privately funded complex will seat about 700 when completed and will serve as home to Oakwood school's field hockey, lacrosse, soccer and track and field teams.

UPDATE @ 11:30 p.m.: The lights will remain on through the end of the day Tuesday, Hale said. That’s because when they are turned on for the first time, they have to remain on for 48 hours.

Humane Society of Greater Dayton offers low-cost spay/neuter surgeries today

Published: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 @ 10:50 AM

Humane Society of Greater Dayton offers low-cost spay/neuter surgeries today


DAYTON — The Humane Society of Greater Dayton will lift financial restrictions for the spay/neuter voucher program today making the discount program accessible to everyone today.  

In honor of World Spay Day, the Humane Society of Greater Dayton is working with local veterinary offices to help spay/neuter more pets. 

"Spaying and neutering your pet is such a crucial part in fighting overpopulation within our community, but it can be an expensive procedure for animal owners," said Brian Weltge, president and CEO of the Humane Society of Greater Dayton.

Individuals must be part of the voucher program to be eligible for these discounted rates. You can pre-pay for your voucher by visiting the Humane Society of Greater Dayton between 1 and 6 p.m. today

Once you purchase your voucher, set up your appointment with one of five local vet clinics including: Animal Medical Center of Miamisburg, North Main-Clayton Animal Hospital, Shiloh Animal Hospital and Pets in Stitches. 

"We are so thankful to be working with some amazingly generous veterinary offices who are devoted in serving our community and impacting the lives of pets,” Weltge said. “These vets are showing the true meaning of philanthropy and are leading by example by providing a day for anyone to take advantage of these extremely discounted rates." 

Visit the Humane Society of Greater Dayton webpage for additional information www.hsdayton.org.