Road work discussed in Urbancrest

By Dedra Cordle
Staff Writer

In the 20 years since it opened to the public, Urbancrest Industrial Drive has seen enormous growth. Dozens of businesses have popped up along both sides of the road while hundreds of motorists travel down the nearly three-mile stretch each day.

With its convenient location to highways and growing municipalities, the potential growth along Urbancrest Industrial Drive seems limitless, but one thing that could hinder its future promise is the look of the road itself.

Urbancrest Industrial Drive has seen little upgrades, said Urbancrest Mayor Joseph Barnes Sr. There is a smattering of patchwork to fill potholes, but the look of the road now is a far cry from how it looked when it opened.

“There is a lot of wear and tear,” said Barnes.

That could change in the near future.

According to Barnes, the village has engaged in discussions with the city of Grove City to collaborate on a project to bring aesthetic upgrades to Urbancrest Industrial Drive.
He also said at the July 12 council meeting that he would like to bring Jackson Township into the fold to try to lessen the cost burden to repair the road.

Barnes said that he asked the city to provide an estimate of the potential cost of the project. According to an opinion of probable construction cost, upgrades to the road from the railroad tracks to Lewis Center Way could cost $472,500.

Upon receiving that estimate, Barnes said he would like to have Bird & Bull, the engineering and surveying firm the village has used for multiple village projects, do an estimate as well.

“It’s just to compare oranges to oranges and apples to apples,” he said at the council meeting.

Barnes, as well as Don Walter, the community relations officer for the city of Grove City, said that this potential project is just in the preliminary discussion phase.

Barnes said it may take a while for the logistics of the project to work itself out, but added that upgrades to Urbancrest Industrial Drive are needed.

In related news, the village ordinance that prohibits motorists traveling down Urbancrest Industrial Drive from turning onto Augustus Drive between the weekday hours of 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. seems to be working in halting their access to residential roads.

According to councilwoman Veronica Shepherd, there has been a noticeable decrease in cut-through traffic since the ordinance went into effect last month.

“It has changed their whole pattern,” she said “and I am very pleased.”

Community health initiative

The mayor’s second annual ‘Your First Wealth is Your Health Day’ is planned for Aug. 13 at the Martin Luther King Park. The event, which will take place from 10 a.m. to noon, will highlight the importance of physical activity and living a healthy lifestyle for children and adults alike.

According to Barnes, several public health entities will be on hand to administer free public health screenings and answer any questions the public may have as it pertains to their health and wellness.

The public is also asked to bring their bicycles for a fun ride around the village with the mayor and other elected officials.

A free bike raffle is also slated to be held for those aged 14 and under.

Martin Luther King Park is located between the village municipal hall and the Vaughn E. Hairston YMCA, which is located at 3492 First Ave. and 3500 First Ave., respectively.

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