MORAINE, Ohio (WDTN) — Those orange barrels and cones can be a source of headaches for drivers just trying to get to their destinations. I-75 from U.S. 35 to S.R. 725 is undergoing a major reconstruction project.
Loryn Bryson, the Public Information Officer for Ohio Department of Transportation District 7, said crews will be making various improvements.
“We are working on, not only updating the roadway and the pavement, but we’re also tackling some bridge work as well, including updating a ramp right there on Dryden Road,” Bryson said.
The cones and signs will be sticking around for a while, which means drivers will need to get used to new traffic patterns and the possibility of delays. People can expect nightly lane closures in both directions, which can cause some backups. ODOT also redirected one northbound lane to the southbound side to break up congestion.
The speed through this area will remain slower while construction happening. Because of this, Matt Bruning, the Press Secretary for ODOT, said people need to plan for these changes and be patient.
“We know that the top crash causing factors in work zones are following to close and speeding. And so things can change. Lanes get narrow, lanes can shift,” Bruning said.
Since 2018, there have been more than 26,000 crashes in work zones across the state, and 100 people were killed in those crashes. There has already been one fatal crash in the Moraine construction zone since the project started a little over a month ago. Sgt. Tyler Ross with the Ohio State Highway Patrol Public Affairs Unit said this should be a reminder of just how dangerous these work zones can be.
“We need to pay attention to our roadways, our signage, and our work zones. Also, stay off our phones. We can’t predict or forecast the roadway in front of you. So, it’s important to focus on those signs, focus on what’s in front of you,” Sgt. Ross explained.
While this construction zone can be inconvenient for some, Bruning said these repairs are necessary to keep the interstate safe for years to come.
“We want to make sure that things are in good repair in Ohio. We invest heavily in our infrastructure here in the Buckeye State, and so these are a sign of progress and a sign of making sure our roads are in good condition,” Bruning said.
The project is currently in the first phase of construction. The second phase is expected to start by the end of 2023. The entire project is expected to be completed by summer 2025.