Transportation officials are moving ahead with the construction of an overpass on County Road 180 over State Route 15, just southeast of Findlay.
The Hancock County Engineer’s Office and Ohio Department of Transportation have concluded the public feedback process and have decided to proceed with the project.
Hancock County Engineer Doug Cade says the project was initiated in 2018 with a study looking at the number of crashes along State Route 15 in Hancock and Wyandot Counties.
He says the intersection of State Route 15 and County Road 180 has become more and more dangerous as traffic count and speeds have increased.
Cade says traffic will no longer be able to access State Route 15 from County Road 180 once the overpass is completed.
ODOT says the most common concern raised during the public involvement process had to do with the loss of access to State Route 15 from County Road 180.
To mitigate that issue, Cade says Hancock County will be widening County Road 172 to facilitate better access to U.S. 68 and State Route 37.
Both routes are about two miles from County Road 180 and have an interchange with State Route 15.
ODOT said another concern raised by the public was that the overpass may cause new traffic problems at other intersections, such as County Road 8.
ODOT says, due to the planned improvements to County Road 172 prior to the overpass project, it’s anticipated that most traffic will use U.S. 68 or State Route 37 to connect with State Route 15.
During construction, County Road 8 will be restricted to right-in and right-out, with left turns prohibited.
No access across the divided highway will be allowed.
Once the project is complete, Hancock County will re-evaluate the intersection to determine if further action is necessary.
The project now moves into the detailed design phase.
Construction is tentatively set for 2025, but could begin as early as 2022 if funding becomes available earlier.
ODOT says the recorded presentation for the public involvement period and all materials regarding the project will be available for an indefinite time at the following website: www.transportation.ohio.gov/Hancock180.
(FYI – the sign at the intersection says Township Road 180 but it is County Road 180)