Construction is expected in 2015-16 on a $3.5-million project to widen a portion of Taylor Road in Etna Township.

Construction is expected in 2015-16 on a $3.5-million project to widen a portion of Taylor Road in Etna Township.

Township trustees hosted a public meeting Saturday, Oct. 20, to explain the project to residents.

"We had quite a few residents there," trustees Chairman John Carlisle said. "This was more of a kickoff for the project, to let them know what we are planning."

The township will work with the Licking County Engineer's Office on the project to widen what is referred to as Old Taylor Road, between U.S. Route 40 and the already improved portion of Taylor Road in Reynoldsburg that runs between state Route 256 and Old Taylor Road.

Chris Harkness, Etna Township's zoning inspector, said the portion of the road in Reynoldsburg already is three lanes wide, with a center turning lane. The half-mile portion of Taylor Road in the township is only two lanes wide with ditches on either side.

The project includes widening the Etna Township segment of the road to three lanes and adding curbs and sidewalks.

Plans also call for installing a traffic signal at the intersection of Palmer and Taylor roads, where there is now a four-way stop.

Harkness said the township is receiving $2.5 million in federal funds through the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission to help pay for the project. The township will be responsible for the remaining $1 million.

Carlisle said residents questioned the road's alignment, which hasn't yet been designed.

Safety was stressed, he said, since the addition of a sidewalk will prevent area children from walking in the road.

Carlisle said residents also requested estimates on what it would cost to extend water and sewer lines to the area.

Don Rector, general manager of the Southwest Licking Community Water and Sewer District, who attended the Oct. 20 meeting, said there are 21 parcels along that portion of Taylor Road and about 15 buildings. He estimated the total cost of the extensions would be $524,800, which would break down to an individual cost of about $25,000 to extend water and sewer lines to each property.

Rector said it would be better to extend water and sewer lines when the road project is being completed so the crews could work together while the road is under construction.

During the meeting, residents were asked to fill out paperwork notifying the district if they are interested in having the lines extended to their properties. If there is enough interest in the project, Rector said he will begin applying for grants to help defray some of the costs.