National Road between Colonel Glenn Highway and Reese Drive will be widened this year to help ease traffic on the two-lane road that is highly used by people going to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
Beavercreek, Fairborn and Greene County are partnering on the project that will add a center turn lane from the busy Colonel Glenn Highway to where Peerless Technologies sits off of National Road.
The turn lane will help relieve traffic backups caused by those stopped to turn off the road, officials said. Those using gate 19B at Wright Patterson Air Force Base should experience quicker trips when the project is completed sometime in 2015.
“By providing a turn lane it will give that vehicle a chance to get out of the flow of traffic to wait for a gap to make a turn without blocking everyone else,” said Jeff Moorman, Beavercreek city engineer. Beavercreek is the lead agency in planning and administering the 2,200-feet project, which should take four to six months to complete once started, Moorman said.
The project is the result of a 2013 transportation study conducted by the Ohio Department of Transportation to assist Peerless Technologies with future expansion. The project is estimated to cost $880,000, the bulk being borne by ODOT and Jobs Ohio 629 funds, public money made available for roadwork improvements that can assist high technology and corporate headquarters activity.
The Jobs Ohio grant is providing up to $400,000; ODOT up to $300,000; Beavercreek, $100,000; and Greene County $80,000. Fairborn applied for the ODOT grant funding. Peerless Technologies has committed $20,000 to the project as well, according to Andrea Kunk, chief financial officer.
“This investment in infrastructure gives us an opportunity to expand and not have to worry about the traffic and different hurdles of trying to get in and out of our building,” Kunk said. “It helps us have more of a peace of mind as we look to expand that that won’t be an obstacle.”
The company employees about 270, with 70 working at the 2300 National Road location, Kunk said.
Fairborn and Beavercreek city councils approved the agreement in January. Bob Geyer, Greene County engineer, said he’s already signed off on the project and it will come before Greene County Commission for formal approval within 30 days.
Officials also said its rare for more than two local governments to combine on a road project.
“It’s a great thing where you get three different jurisdictions together Fairborn—because Peerless Technologies is in Fairborn—and Beavercreek and Greene County,” said Moorman.
“We’ve been really happy with the support of ODOT, Greene County, Fairborn and Beavercreek, Kunk said. “It’s such a strange road because it changes from city to township several times as you travel down National Road. But it’s an important road because it’s one of the main connectors from Fairborn to Beavercreek.”