The construction of the proposed Bixby Road/U.S. Route 33 interchange near Groveport has been postponed from 2017 to 2036 due to a lack of available funding.
The $37.5 million interchange is one of nearly three dozen road projects the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) has delayed for several years to come. Another local interchange project planned for U.S. 33 at Carroll has been completely removed from the project list.
"ODOT does not have enough money to fund all these projects on their originally planned start dates," said Groveport City Administrator Marsha Hall. "They decided to be up front and re-adjust the project dates for when money is available."
Delaying the construction of the Bixby Road/U.S. 33 interchange also means local government officials must postpone plans for potential commercial development that could have arisen around the interchange.
The delay also means ODOT’s long term plan to make U.S. 33 a limited access highway, consisting of overpasses and interchanges, similar to an interstate freeway, will not be realized any time soon.
According to the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC), ODOT’s Transportation Review Advisory Council (TRAC) received 72 applications from around Ohio for nearly $10 billion worth of projects in 2011. However, ODOT only has about $100 million per year to spend on new construction. MORPC also notes that transportation funding for projects is declining due to a combination of the slow economy and more efficient vehicles, which have reduced the amount of gasoline tax being collected.