The Delaware County Engineer's Office has agreed to implement a long-awaited three-way stop where Jewett Road meets Liberty Road in Liberty Township.
The stop signs, which will be in place by mid-July, are part of a pre-emptive strike against traffic that is expected to build up as a result of upcoming construction of a roundabout at Orange Road and state Route 315 and turn lanes at Route 315 and Powell Road.
"Jewett Road won't be an assigned detour for either project, but we recognize a lot of local traffic will use it to go around the closures," said Rob Riley, chief deputy engineer for the engineer's office. "Because we've anticipated that, we decided to go ahead and add the three-way stop."
Residents who live in the area were asking for the stop signs even before the construction projects on Route 315 were announced.
"We have had an issue for quite some time with traffic getting bottled up at Jewett Road and Liberty Road, because it's a difficult left-hand turn," said Jim Cirigliano, Liberty Township's assistant fiscal officer and a member of the homeowners association for the adjacent Calumet Farms.
"Many of our residents -- not just in my subdivision, but along Jewett Road -- have kids who go to Tyler Run Elementary, and they've been concerned over the traffic and being able to turn left out of their neighborhoods to get their children to school on time in the morning," Cirigliano said. "With the morning rush-hour traffic, it's almost impossible to turn left onto Liberty Road."
At a meeting with the Ohio Department of Transportation and the county engineer earlier this year, Cirigliano and a member of the Bartholomew Lakes homeowners association suggested a stoplight be placed at Jewett and Liberty roads. Studies performed on the intersection found a three-way stop would function better because of the high volume of traffic on Liberty Road and the proximity of the railroad tracks to Jewett Road.
"There was a concern that cars would back all the way up to the tracks, which is not a good thing," Cirigliano said.
Riley said the county will monitor the effectiveness of the three-way stop to determine if it will become a permanent fixture once roadwork is complete.
Other precautions also are being taken in anticipation of the backed-up traffic the planned roadwork may cause.
At their June 1 meeting, Liberty Township trustees approved plans to lay down nearly $4,000 worth of reflective striping on the center and edges of Jewett Road. Township Administrator Dave Anderson said the striping will come in handy during the construction for drivers who may be new to the winding road that runs from Route 315 to Liberty Road.
There also are plans to install "no outlet" signs at the residential entrances to Calumet Farms subdivision to discourage through traffic.
Construction is expected to begin in mid- to late July on a roundabout at Route 315 and Orange Road. Route 315 will close for just a week during the construction, but the intersection at Orange and Carriage roads could be closed for as long as two months.
In August, ODOT will begin work at Route 315 and Powell Road to construct turn lanes. There is no completion date set for the project.