CORTLAND Council OKs funds for street work

A guardrail will go up on Pearl Street near the elementary school.
CORTLAND -- Long-standing plans to widen the city's main traffic artery are moving closer to fruition.
Council unanimously approved an emergency ordinance Monday authorizing the mayor to pay the city's share of costs for the South High Street widening project.
Service Director Paul Makosky called it "one of the most important capital-improvement projects the community has ever undertaken."
"A lot of the problems with traffic backup on South High occur when someone needs to make a left-hand turn," Makosky said. "There's not much of a break in traffic to allow someone to make that turn, so traffic just slowly backs up."
The widening of a half-mile stretch and creation of a center turning lane will allow for a more continuous flow of traffic, Makosky said.
The project also includes replacement of a waterline, resurfacing and replacement of storm sewers, sidewalks and curbs.
Cost of project
Makosky said 80 percent of the $1.7 million estimated cost will be covered by the federal government, with state funding accounting for the other 20 percent.
The city must assume any costs over the $1.7 million figure, as well as the $356,525 cost of the waterline installation and the costs of right-of-way and construction easements.
The ordinance was passed as an emergency to meet the project deadlines established by the Ohio Department of Transportation, Makosky said.
Council also approved an emergency ordinance authorizing a contract with Lake Erie Construction to install a guardrail on Pearl Street near Cortland Elementary School at a cost not to exceed $4,320.
The new guardrail will serve the dual purpose of protecting children near the school and discouraging motorists from parking in the posted no-parking zone, Makosky said.
Council heard from Tournament Trail resident George Holzheimer about the unresolved matter of perceived problems with flooding from Walnut Creek.
Councilman Michael Hillman said council plans to wait for the results of an ongoing study of the creek.
Trick-or-treat was set for 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31.

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