By Rick Palsgrove
Driving on west Bixby Road is going to be different for a while.
A portion of west Bixby Road will be closed to through traffic, beginning on or around July 19, for approximately 60 days for road and culvert improvements.
This improvement is part of the west Bixby Road reconstruction project, which is being done in two phases by the city of Groveport in partnership with the Franklin County Engineer’s office.
“The city’s Capital improvement plan includes the reconstruction of Bixby Road under Phase 2, a continuation of the 2017 Bixby Road Phase 1 project,” said Groveport City Engineer Steve Farst. “The road condition is poor and required rehabilitation. The culvert is aged and due for replacement.”
The project begins at the entrance to the Madison Christian School and extends east a distance of about 3,500 feet to the entrance to Three Creeks Metro Park. Farst said the improvements will include road reconstruction and paving, a shared-use path, and a new culvert located near the Madison Christian Church under Bixby Road.
“The road width is not being significantly widened,” said Farst. “Work also includes a shared-use paved path alongside the south side of the road that will connect to the Bixby Road Three Creeks Metro Park entrance.”
According to Farst, in 2019, the Franklin County Engineer’s office contacted Groveport officials and advised that an existing culvert carrying Hendron Ditch was to be replaced by the county in 2021. The city and county worked together to package that improvement with the city’s Phase 2, Part 1 Bixby Road improvement into a single bid package.
“The city is funding the road improvement while the county is funding the culvert replacement,” said Farst, who added a portion of the new culvert will be lengthened a few feet to accommodate the shared use path, which the city will partially fund.
Farst said funding for Part 1 is from a grant and loan to the city from the Ohio Public Works Commission, that combined are not to exceed $1.85 million. The funding for Part 2 is funded by the Franklin County Engineer’s office and from the Ohio Public Works Commission funds for the portion of the culvert carrying the shared-use path.
According to Farst, the total construction contract is $1.5 million. Part 1 is $ 971,735 and Part 2 is $ 609,673.
Farst said the road handles about 3,000 vehicles a day and, with future growth in the area, it’s expected traffic will increase to 4,500 vehicles a day.
According to information from the city of Groveport, during the project travelers should follow signed detour routes. West Bixby Road will be closed between its intersections with Hendron Road and Bixby Ridge Drive East. Bixby Road will be closed to through traffic. The address range of the closure is between 3393 Bixby Road and 4200 Bixby Road.
Emergency police and fire services, mail delivery, and trash collection will continue throughout the duration of the project within the construction zone. During the project:
•Through traffic along Bixby Road will not be allowed to pass through the construction zone, as the bridge/culvert will be out.
•Access to properties west of Madison Christian Church, 3565 Bixby Road, including visitors to the church, shall approach from the west from Groveport Road.
•Access to properties east of the railroad crossing (located north of the church), shall be made from the east, from State Route 317. These include the following facilities/ addresses: Amsted Rail-Griffin Wheel, 3900 Bixby Road; Three Creeks Metro Park, 3860 Bixby Road; AEP Dolan Center and AEP Training Center, 4100/4001 Bixby Road; and Living Skills Bixby Center, 4200 Bixby Road.
•Eastbound through-travelers should follow the posted detour route that directs travelers to use Groveport Road east to State Route 317, turning left and going north toward the Bixby Road/State Route 317 intersection.
•Westbound and southbound through-travelers should follow the posted detour route that directs travelers use State Route 317 in a southerly direction, turning right at Groveport Road and going west toward the Bixby Road/Groveport Road intersection, to access all properties located west of the Madison Christian Church.
•All through-traffic should follow posted the detour route and avoid the construction zone.
•Residents and visitors to local residences, businesses, the Metro Parks, and the church/school, should follow the above instructions for access to these properties.
•Dates are approximate and subject to change due to weather or unforeseen construction issues.