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

Drone's view of completed I-75 project

“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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Scattered showers return, wet roads expected throughtout 

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 3:36 AM

Storm Center 7's Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs talks about what to expect today and tomorrow.

>> Live Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

QUICK-LOOK FORECAST

  • Occasional Showers Today
  • Drying out and mild for tomorrow
  • Near normal temps this week 

>> 5-Day Forecast

DETAILED FORECAST

TODAY:  Off and on light rain showers through the day. Although wet, temperatures will still reach into the upper 50s. This will be slightly below average. Showers become more isolated late afternoon. Breezy and mostly cloudy. Overnight a passing shower or two possible. 

WEDNESDAY: A shower or two will come down before dawn. It’ll be dry for the day with temperatures reaching back near 60 degrees. Clouds break through the afternoon for some sunshine. 

>>County-by-County Weather

THURSDAY: A nice, dry day from start to finish with highs in the low 60s. Expect sunshine and a few clouds as well.

FRIDAY: It’ll be dry, early with sunshine with highs peaking in the middle 60s. Clouds increase late in the day with a possible evening rain shower, but it will not be widespread.

SATURDAY: A pleasant, dry start of the weekend with afternoon sunshine and highs in the low 60s. 

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Arrest ordered for man convicted in Greene County under stricter animal cruelty law 

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 12:38 PM

The first to be successfully prosecuted in Greene County under stricter guidelines for cruelty to animals has violated his bond conditions and is not in custody.

Matthew Bolen, 24, is set to be sentenced this week after he pleaded guilty in January to causing serious physical harm to a companion animal, a fifth-degree felony, according to Greene County court records.

STAY CONNECTED: Greene County News on Facebook

Judge Stephen Wolaver has ordered Bolen to be arrested after violating conditions of his release from jail, according to court records.

Bolen is the first to be tried in Greene County under Goddard’s Law, which went into effect in 2016 and increased the severity of the crime of hurting a companion animal from a misdemeanor to a felony.

Bolen was arrested in August 2017 after he was observed by a neighbor in Xenia throwing and banging his then girlfriend’s puppy, Willow, on the ground.

RELATED >>> Defendant changes plea in abused puppy case in Xenia

Leah Lind, the city of Xenia’s victims advocate for the prosecutor, adopted and provided care for Willow. The puppy suffered a broken knee and displaced hip, among other injuries.

Lind has been active in working with the county prosecutor’s office to get a conviction in the case. Through her Facebook page Saving Willow, which is followed by 682 people, Lind has kept the public up-to-date on Willow’s recovery. 

Bolen posted bond in October 2017 and was released from jail pending court proceedings on a $5,000 bond. Conditions of his release included being evaluated for chemical dependency and not having any contact with animals, according to court records.

Along with ordering Bolen’s arrest, Judge Wolaver has increased his bond amount to $15,000.

Bolen is scheduled to appear for sentencing on Thursday. He faces a maximum sentence of 12 months in prison on the fifth-degree felony conviction.

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Lanes reopen after vehicle fire on I-70 west in Clark County

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 12:57 PM
Updated: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 1:49 PM

Contributed Photo/ODOT
Contributed Photo/ODOT

UPDATE @ 1:50 p.m.: 

All lanes of Interstate 70 west have reopened at the Ohio 41 exit after an earlier vehicle fire was extinguished. 

UPDATE @ 1:35 p.m.: 

Emergency crews have reopened the center lane of Interstate 70 west at the Ohio 41 exit following a vehicle fire, according to ODOT cameras in the area. 

The right lane remains blocked. 

Additional details about the incident remain unavailable. 

FIRST REPORT

Fire crews and state troopers are blocking the right and center lanes of Interstate 70 west at Ohio 41 following a vehicle fire Tuesday afternoon. 

Emergency units were dispatched to the highway around 12:40 p.m. and reported the vehicle was fully engulfed in flames, according to initial reports. 

Traffic is still able to pass by the scene in the left lane. 

There have been no initial reports of injuries. 

We’ll update this page as new details become available. 

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Dayton traffic from the WHIO Traffic Center

Published: Wednesday, April 18, 2018 @ 1:18 AM
Updated: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 12:45 PM

Traffic issues can be reported by calling our newsroom at 937-259-2237 or tweeting @WHIOTraffic .

Traffic conditions are updated every six minutes on AM 1290 and News 95.7 FM.

Major Highway Incidents

  • On westbound I-70 near the Ohio 41 exit in Springfield Twp., Clark County, a vehicle fire reported around 12:40 p.m. is blocking the right lanes. 

Surface Street Incidents

  • No incidents to report. 

>> RELATED: WHIO App-Winter

>> RELATED: Track the latest conditions in your neighborhood on our live WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

Ongoing Construction & Other Closures 

Live look at highways on our traffic cameras here.

Latest traffic conditions are also available on our traffic map. 

MONTGOMERY COUNTY

  • Arlington Road between Pleasant Plain and Upper Lewisburg Salem Road, BRIDGE CLOSURE, March 5 - Sept. 30. All ramps for I-70 will remain open. 
  • Keowee Street north of Stanley Avenue, bridge closed until 2019. The official detour is: Keowee Street to Stanley Avenue to I-75 to Wagner Ford Road and back to Dixie. More information is available here.
  • Stewart Street Ramp to US 35 East, RAMP CLOSURE March 28 - Sept 30, 2018. The official detour is: Stewart Street to Edwin C. Moses Boulevard to I-75 north to US 35 west to James H. McGee Blvd. to US 35 east.
  • SR 4 north/south between I-70 and Lower Valley Pike, Lane closure April 2 - 26. One northbound and two southbound lanes will remain open. 
  • I-75 north Ramp to US 35 west, RAMP CLOSURE, March 12 - Sept. 30. The official detour is: I-75 north to US 35 east to Jefferson/Main Street to Ludlow Street to US 35 west. 
  • Airport Access Road South between US 40 and I-70, Lane closure April 2 - 27. One southbound lane will remain open. 
  • SR 48 between First Street and Riverdale Street, Lane closure April 2, 2018 - April 1, 2019. One lane will remain open in each direction.

GREENE COUNTY

  • Red Stewart Airfield (Waynesville Airport) and State Route 725, lane closures April 23 - 27 from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. 
  • State Route 235 between Dayton Yellow Springs and Enon Roads, ROAD CLOSURE for six months. The official detour is U.S. 68, West Hyde, and West Enon Roads.
  • Trebein Road from U.S. 35, Lane restrictions April 16 - August, 2018 for construction of a right turn lane. One lane will remain maintained at all times with flagging operations. 

PREBLE COUNTY

  • State Route 320 at Cedar Springs Road, ROAD CLOSURE for a mudslide until further notice.

WARREN COUNTY

MIAMI COUNTY

  • N. Market Street between Foss Way/Kirk Lane and Stonyridge Avenue, ROAD CLOSURE March 5 at 7 a.m. - Aug. 10 at 5 p.m. 
  • US 36 westbound between Scott Drive and Kienle Drive, Lane closure March 26 - June 30. One westbound lane will remain open. 

DARKE COUNTY

  • SR 49 between Hollansburg-Sampson Road and Arcanum Bears Mill Road, Lane closure April 16 - May 16. One lane will remain open in each direction through the use of portable signal.

MERCER COUNTY

  • SR 117 between US 127 and SR 116, Daily lane closures April 23 - July 31 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. 
  • SR 49 between Menchhofer Road and SR 219, ROAD CLOSURE April 16 - 30. The official detour is: SR 29 to SR 118 to SR 219
  • SR 707 between Taylor Road and Lewis Street, ROAD CLOSURE April 23 - 27. The official detour is US 127 north to SR 117 east 

SHELBY COUNTY

  • SR 47 between Fifth Avenue and Wilkinson Avenue, Lane closures Jan. 21 - Nov. 27. One lane will remain open in each direction at all times. 
  • SR 274 between Shroyer Road and Island Avenue, Lane closure April 9 - June 9. One lane will remain open in each direction. 
  • SR 66 between Basinburg Road and Mason Road, ROAD CLOSURE April 9 - May 11. The official detour is: SR 66 to SR 47 to I-75 to SR 29 to SR 705 to SR 66

CLARK COUNTY

  • I-70 east Ramp to I-675 north, RAMP CLOSURE March 15 - Aug. 15. The official detour is: I-70 east to I-675 south to SR 444 to I-675 north
  • Spangler Road south between Restoration Drive and I-70, Traffic pattern switch March 26 - August 15. Southbound Spangler Road traffic going to I-675 south and I-70 east will be moved to northbound side of I-675. Traffic will then be redirected to the southbound side of I-675 after passing over I-70. 

CHAMPAIGN COUNTY

  • Upper Valley Pike between State Route 296 and Lippincott Road, ROAD CLOSURE, starting April 16 for approximately four weeks.

LOGAN COUNTY

  • US 68 between SR 508 and Township Road 310, ROAD CLOSURE April 23 - 27. The official detour is: US 68 to SR 296 to SR 29 to SR 235 to SR 47 to US 68. 
  • SR 235 between Township Road 93 and Township Road 250, ROAD CLOSURE April 30 - May 4. The official detour is SR 366 to US 33 to SR 385 to SR 117/SR 235.
  • SR 274 between Morris Rose Road and SR 235, Daily lane closures May 1 - June 29 between 7 a.m. 5 p.m. 
  • SR 235 between SR 720 and SR 117, Daily lane closures May 1 - June 29 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.
  • SR 68 between SR 508 and Gunn Town Road, Daily lane closures April 23 - June 29 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. 

AUGLAIZE COUNTY

  • SR 197 between Township Road 117A and Ridge Street, Lane closure April 2 - May 3. One lane will remain open for travel in each direction through the use of temporary signal.
  • SR 116 between Hesse Road and Baker-Wright Road, Lane closure April 2 - 30. One lane will remain open for travel in each direction through the use of temporary signal.
  • US 33 between SR 29 and I-75, Daily lane closures March 26 - July 31 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. One lane will remain open in each direction. 
  • US 33 between SR 65 and Center Street, Lane closure April 16 - May 9. One lane will remain open in each direction through the use of temporary signal.

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