By Rick Palsgrove
The Franklin County Engineer plans to reconfigure the intersection of Winchester Pike/Brice Road/Bixby Road to improve traffic flow and safety.
Currently Brice and Bixby roads connect to Winchester Pike at an angle. The proposed $4 million improvement would square off the intersection and include a traffic light. Where Bixby Road now connects to Winchester Pike would become a cul-de-sac.
Ted Beidler, projects engineer for Franklin County, said the goal is to maintain traffic on Winchester Pike while the intersection project is being completed. He said the project is scheduled to begin in 2015 and take less than a year to complete.
Beidler said the project will help alleviate a “moderate accident problem” at the intersection and help the flow of traffic on highly traveled Winchester Pike.
Franklin County Traffic Engineer Mike Meeks said officials considered installing a roundabout traffic circle at the intersection, but decided against it because the speed limit on Winchester Pike is 55 mph.
“We would have had to twist the road to accommodate a roundabout at that speed and that would’ve used up a lot of ground and intruded on the nearby wetlands area to the southwest,” said Meeks. “The proposed plan adapts better to the landscape and won’t harm the wetlands.”
The Franklin County Engineer’s Office is funding 75 percent of the project and applying for Ohio Public Works Commission funding for the remaining 25 percent of the cost.
Additionally, Beidler said that, just down the road to the west, the intersection of Winchester Pike/Shannon Road/Ebright Road is also scheduled for $3 million in improvements in 2016, which would include the installation of turn lanes, widening the nearby bridge and a traffic light.
For information on the projects, visit www.franklincountyengineer.org.