Commuters in northwest Columbus might experience some delays because the northbound ramp to state Route 315 from Bethel Road will be closed until Oct. 16.
The Columbus Recreation and Parks Department is making a connection from the Bethel Road corridor west of 315 to the Olentangy Trail east of the freeway, which puts 20,000 residents in direct access to the multipurpose trail, said Brian Hoyt, a recreation and parks spokesman.
“This just makes the access easy and safe,” Hoyt said. “We think it will open it up to a lot more people, which is great.”
The closing is necessary to accommodate construction of a 100-foot tunnel under the ramp from Bethel to 315.
The tunnel will be lighted and will include an ADA-accessible ramp.
A previous component of the project, widening the Olentangy Trail about a mile between Antrim Park and Bethel Road, already has been completed.
A new multipurpose lane, separated by a concrete barrier, is being built on the north side of Bethel Road for access to and from the trail, said Brad Westall, recreation and parks planning manager.
Those who use the Central Ohio Transit Authority’s Park & Ride facility at Anheuser-Busch Sports Park at the southeast corner of Bethel and Olentangy River Road may cross Bethel and Olentangy and follow the dedicated lane on Bethel to the trail, Westall said.
Motorists are being diverted to East Dublin-Granville Road to access 315 north. Motorists also may access the freeway from eastbound Henderson Road. Access to Bethel westbound from 315 remains unaffected, and the 315 southbound on-ramp from Bethel remains open.
The project’s cost is $3.1 million – $2.6 million from the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission and $500,000 from the city of Columbus.
The project is expected to be completed by the end of the year, officials said.