Don’t cause chaos, follow the detours

All right, everyone fall in line now.

On Sunday, the Ohio Department of Transportation will begin demolition of the eastbound state Route 82 bridge as part of the diverging diamond interchange construction project in Howland.

State Route 46 under the Route 82 bridge will be closed for five days, and ODOT has released a list of detours for motorists to follow. This newspaper is imploring motorists to use and abide by them so traffic can run as smoothly as possible while ODOT completes the next phase of this massive project.

The Route 46 northbound detour will be Route 82 east to state Route 193 to Route 82 west. The Route 46 southbound detour will be Route 82 west to state Route 5 to Route 82 east to Route 46.

When ODOT tore down the westbound bridge in October, the department followed the same process; however, s took matters into their own hands by trying to beat the system and take local side streets. That eventually backed up the system, causing traffic to converge and slow down commutes. We heard several concerns about the traffic around the construction area back then and we, along with ODOT, are urging local motorists to stay patient and follow the posted detours.

There’s nothing worse than sitting in traffic on a beautiful sunny afternoon.

“What typically happens is when roads close, people try to find the quickest way around,” Justin Chesnic, public information officer for ODOT District 4, told our reporter Friday. “But when you’re impacting that many motorists, sometimes those local routes kind of get clogged and bogged down. We want to avoid that.”

Chesnic said the detours will be heavily signed when the construction begins, so make sure to follow them and find your way around the road work safely.

If everyone takes the same approach, traffic should flow safely and smoothly, according to Chesnic, and we can all get on with our busy days and on to our next destination.



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