As construction on the Interstate 270-U.S. Route 23 interchange moves into high gear, northbound motorists might need to shift into low gear.
Beginning in mid-May and continuing for two years, all northbound Route 23 traffic will be diverted to existing southbound lanes from north of I-270 to just north of Flint Road.
Southbound traffic will use the temporary pavement immediately west of the usual roadway. That pavement was constructed during the winter.
By moving all traffic two lanes to the west, construction can begin on the two 25-foot-deep trenches that will be dug where the existing northbound lanes exist.
After completion in fall 2016, those two below-surface lanes will allow traffic to flow northbound uninterrupted by turn lanes or traffic signals, especially at the busy intersection of Campus View Boulevard and Route 23.
Local lanes will allow motorists to turn onto Campus View Boulevard or into area businesses.
During construction, turns onto East Campus View won't be permitted. To go east or into the Crosswoods development, motorists will take a marked detour onto Dimension Drive, to High Cross Boulevard and back onto East Campus View Boulevard.
Ohio Department of Transportation spokesperson Nancy Burton said efforts are being made to prepare motorists for the changes.
Meetings have been held with local businesspeople, bus drivers, area residents and others who will be affected the most.
"In the beginning, it will take some adjustment," Burton said. "The pattern will be in effect for two years, and it will become ho-hum."
The $72 million project, called the North Side Fix, will involve reconfiguring the busy and accident-prone interchange.
ODOT has created a project website called 270-23.com. People may sign up to receive traffic alerts so they know the latest traffic patterns before they attempt to navigate the area, Burton said.
The website also features live cameras to allow motorists to see traffic conditions at nearby interchanges and intersections as they consider alternate routes.