The City of Beavercreek is planning to spend $8.4 million on street repairs and roadway capital improvement projects this year marking the largest amount the city has spent on roads within the last six years.
The amount the city will spend on roads this year is a 53 percent increase over the $5.5 million spent in 2014.
The city’s streets budget increased after Beavercreek voters approved a 2-mill additional roads levy in the May primary election. The five-year levy will annually generate an estimated $2.6 million.
The new street levy will also allow the city to double its street resurfacing budget to $2 million in 2015, according to the city engineering office.
In addition to the new street levy revenue, the city is also using $5.6 million in grant funds for the construction projects. This figure is the second largest of streets grant funding the city has received within the last six years, according to city data.
The majority of the roadway capital improvements will occur in residential areas. The improvements will upgrade “substandard roadways” — more rural township-style streets, said Jeff Moorman, the Beavercreek engineer.
“Over time, we try to go through and modernize those roads and bring them up to our city municipal standards,” he said. “Also in situations where you have two lanes, it’s an issue when you get a lot of traffic. You get one person who wants to make a left turn into a driveway. He’s blocking everybody behind him until he can get a gap in traffic and make that left turn. “
Other communities in Greene County are maintaining or reducing what they are spending on roads.
The Village of Yellow Springs is planning to spend $100,000, 53 percent less, compared to the $213,000 the village spent last year. The village will use the money to to repave and repair .75 miles of road.
The City of Bellbrook will spend the same amount it typically spends each year — $150,000.
The City of Xenia has budgeted $650,000 to repave 12 roads, about 2.4 miles, and seal cracks this year marking a 23 percent decline compared to $848,586 spent on streets in 2014.
In general, the Xenia streets program focuses on local streets, however in 2014 the city used an ODOT grant to resurface U.S. Route 42 and U.S. Route 68, said Chris Berger, the Xenia city engineer.
“The only way we had our money for the local share was to not do the streets last year,” he said. “… Now were’re back on our annual street program for this year and 2016.”
The total project cost was $1.2 million, Berger said.
Xenia also had to spend money on emergency repairs on Wilson Drive near Greene Memorial Hospital in 2014, Berger said.
“That streets was in such bad shape with potholes everywhere, our fear was someone who needs emergency medical care would come in an ambulance and tear out an axle on the way to the hospital,” Berger said.
Back in Beavercreek, three of the most significant streets projects in the city this year include a $1.9 million road reconstruction project on a 3,100 foot section of North Fairfield Road that sits between Jonathan Drive and Sharkertown Road. Improvements in this area will include widening the road from two lanes to three lanes, Moorman said.
The road reconstruction is expected to take a year to complete and will start in the spring.
“We’re adding a center turn lane to let people who want to make a left into their driveway get out of the flow of traffic which helps traffic flow and safety by doing that,” Moorman said.
The project is funded with a $1.5 million grant from the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission and $400,000 from the Ohio Public Works Commission.
Construction on a second road widening project on a 3,900 foot section of Grange Hall Road, between Kemp Road and Gardenview Drive, is expected to start this summer and will take up to a year to complete.
A center turn lane and curbs will be added to the road.
The $2.1 million project is funded with a $1.4 million grant and $700,000 in taxpayer money.
A third major road improvement project planned will take place on a 2,800 foot section of road on National Road between Colonel Glenn and Reese Drive.
A center turn lane will be added along with curbs on the west side of the road and drainage improvements, Moorman said.
The $880,000 project will be funded with two grants that total $700,000 and $80,000 from the Greene County Engineer’s Office. The city will fund the remaining $100,000.
The project will start in the spring and finish by fall.
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