THE BLADE/NATALIE TRUSSO CAFARE Enlarge | Buy This Photo
The "Road Closed" signs at the Sylvania Avenue and Mitchaw Road intersection in Sylvania Township are expected to come down this week when construction of a roundabout is completed.
The intersection near Timberstone Junior High School has been closed to motorists since Sept. 26. It is expected to reopen by Friday or sooner depending on weather conditions.
“The final work item left to open the road to traffic is the application of temporary painted pavement markings. Based on forecasted temperatures ,the closure might be extended until Thursday,” said Ron Myers, traffic operations engineer for the Lucas County Engineer’s Office.
Contractors Crestline Paving and Excavating of Toledo need temperatures above 32 degrees to apply paint, and if the weather cooperates, the road could open Wednesday or Thursday, he said.
The expected completion time of the roundabout is 45 days, which was last week from the time the intersection was closed.
The closure initially caused increased traffic through Timberstone's parking lot, so police had to patrol the area and warn motorists that the school’s parking lot is not a detour route. On Tuesday afternoon, just before school let out, a car or two cut through the lot to Sylvania Avenue or Mitchaw Road.
For some who routinely use the route, such as parents and school employees, they are waiting to have access to the road again.
‘I’d like to see it open,” Whitehouse resident Larry Wymer said. He occasionally picks up his wife who is employed at the school. He usually drove to the school heading east on Sylvania but now has to take detours.
“We are very annoyed,” school parent Cheryl Rahe, 45 said. She picks up her daughter from Timberstone and said the roadblock has caused her to take a long route to a destination that is near her home.
She lives at a subdivision just west of the intersection off of Sylvania Avenue.
“We have to go down Kilburn Road to get there [Timberstone] or anywhere. We are blocked,” she said. “”But it will be nice when it opens.”
Although paving is complete, crews will work to grade and seed the land while tying up any loose ends, Mr. Myers explained.
The location was chosen for a roundabout because of an expected increased traffic of about 720 cars on school days stemming from the new Central Trail Elementary School on Mitchaw Road.
A 2009 traffic study showed 2,440 vehicles a day were on Sylvania Avenue west of Mitchaw, while 4,850 were counted east of the intersection. The engineer’s office found that a roundabout was a safe and efficient design plan for the intersection compared to stop signs or traffic signals.
The construction cost is estimated at $688,000, and that includes drainage improvements. About $401,000 of that cost was paid by an Ohio Public Works Commission grant, $265,000 from the Sylvania City Schools, and the rest from the Lucas County Road and Bridge funds, Mr. Myers said.