ASHLAND — Construction for a roundabout in northern Ashland is expected to begin next summer and officials said it will cost the city nothing.
Ashland City Council has mulled the construction of a roundabout at the intersection of Cottage Street, U.S. Route 250 and Faultless Drive for years. Council approved a resolution Tuesday that puts the $1.74 million project in motion — again.
Mayor Matt Miller said the Ohio Department of Transportation found an error in council’s resolution passed last year, thus creating the need to pass another resolution. He said the original resolution made ODOT responsible for maintaining the roundabout. The new, accurate resolution made the city responsible.
City officials said Ashland will receive a state safety funds grant that will cover 90% of the project cost. The other 10% is the city’s responsibility, but Ashland received a state public works commission grant to cover that cost.
The project has already been designed. It will be a single-lane roundabout, large enough to accommodate large trucks and trailers.
“Ours will be much larger than what you see in most places,” Miller said.
The mayor also said the U.S. 250 slip ramp for northbound traffic will continue to be used. That traffic will not use the roundabout, he said.
Miller said he knows some people are hesitant in using roundabouts, but he believes they are much safer because it forces drivers to slow down.
ODOT officials have said there were 12 crashes at that intersection within a three-year period, 2014-2017. Of those crashes, eight resulted in injuries.
The state’s transportation department said the causes of those crashes are because people aren’t able to find gaps in traffic for safe crossing. The agency studied the intersection for alternative traffic control and has tried different low-cost countermeasures.
“Signalization of the intersection is not warranted and all-way stop control would increase delay for U.S. Route 250 traffic,” ODOT stated in a news release issued in December 2020.
Construction is expected to last 120 days once started, according to ODOT.