By Rick Palsgrove
The city of Groveport and Groveport Madison Schools want to improve safety near the high school and are working together to upgrade the traffic signal and crosswalk at South Hamilton Road and Firehouse Lane.
Groveport City Council and the Groveport Madison Board of Education both recently passed resolutions to jointly apply for Ohio Public Works Commission funding for the project.
“Our city engineer believes combining these two projects makes financial sense and would make an excellent grant application to the Ohio Public Works Commission considering the cooperation with the school and safety issues,” Groveport City Administrator Marsha Hall said earlier this summer.
The OPWC grant application will be submitted in September. The OPWC’s decision on whether or not it will provide funding could be announced by late December.
Hall said the current total estimate for the project is $420,000. Groveport Madison Schools would pay $62,000 of that total.
“Our local payment is still being reviewed,” said Hall. “One option is to receive a grant of approximately $200,000 with the remainder being a $40,500 local payment and the remainder as a no-interest 12 year loan.”
Hall said the traffic signal upgrade could include: conversion of the traffic signal to a mast arm signal (sized for possible future left turn lane improvements if needed); crosswalk and crossing notification system for pedestrians having to wait in the center aisle; and a sidewalk on the east side of South Hamilton Road/State Route 317 from the crosswalk to the COTA stop.
Hall said, if funding is received, “We could start work on the project after we sign the funding agreement in July 2018 and be completed in early 2019.”
Hall said the proposed improvements are needed.
“The school has students who arrive and depart the high school by COTA bus and school officials feel the current set up is not as safe as it should be for the students,” said Hall.
When asked if there are plans to upgrade the traffic signal on South Hamilton Road/State Route 317 at Eastland Career Center, Hall said, “This is currently in our capital improvement plan for 2020.”
Groveport Madison Schools officials are also asking that a 20 mph school zone be authorized in front of the high school on South Hamilton Road/State Route 317.
Currently the speed limit on the road is 50 mph. When asked what hours the proposed school zone, with its lower speed limit, would be in effect, Hall said, “Just during the morning when school starts and at the end of the school day.”