By Rick Palsgrove
Three events this summer and fall in and near Groveport could cause some traffic tangles.
Big stuff coming through
Groveport Police Chief Casey Adams said, from late summer to the end of the year, huge pieces of equipment and infrastructure headed to the big Intel project in Licking County will pass through the area on local roads. He said the items – which can be 23 feet high, the length of half a football field, and weigh a million pounds – will be trucked from Manchester on the Ohio River and up through central Ohio to Licking County.
“They’ll be massive,” said Adams.
He said the big items cannot use freeways because they will not fit under the overpasses, so side roads will be used. This will involve raising traffic signals and electric lines to allow the humongous items to pass under them.
“It’ll be like when someone moves a house on the roads,” said Groveport City Councilman Ed Dildine.
Groveport City Administrator B.J. King said there are concerns that the huge weight of the items being trucked could damage area roads. He said the city should secure a bond from the developers to ensure the city is reimbursed for potential road damage.
Adams said the exact route and roads the massive items will pass through the area on have not yet been determined.
The Air Show and Pelotonia
According to Adams, the Air Show at Rickenbacker Airport from June 16-18 and the Pelotonia bicycle tour on Aug. 5 “will create heavy traffic congestion in and around Groveport.” He said the events will also increase pedestrian foot traffic and more bicycle traffic.
“This will require our police department to devote resources to expedite and block traffic flow in Groveport,” said Adams.
He said Air Show organizers are looking at ways to bring vehicles and spectators into Rickenbacker Airport quickly as well as dispersing traffic efficiently and limiting wait times. He said the city’s GREAT Transportation system and COTA buses dropping off passengers (primarily workers from the area’s warehouses) at the Marathon gas station at State Route 317 and Alum Creek Drive will be impacted by traffic from the event.
Regarding the Pelotonia bicycle tour, which is a fund raising event for cancer research, Adams said that Bixby Road and Groveport’s Cruiser Park are along the bike tour route. He added set up for the event could affect the city’s First Thursday event on Aug. 3 in Cruiser Park.
Adams asked Pelotonia organizers to include the Groveport Police in their planning sessions so the officers know what times the bicyclists will be passing through the area on Aug. 5 and how many special duty officers would be needed.
Groveport Police statistics
January crime statistics, according to the Groveport Police: 10 accidents, 0 assault, 2 burglaries, 12 domestic disputes, 1 domestic violence, 0 OVI and alcohol, 12 thefts/robberies, 2 stolen/unauthorized use, 1 missing persons, 4 weapon related calls, 0 narcotic related offenses, 10 threats, 0 vandalism, 7 juvenile complaints, 189 traffic citations, 0 sex related crime, 29 school related calls,21 suspicious vehicles/persons, 29 suicide attempts/mental health calls.
Income tax revenue
The city of Groveport’s income tax revenue year-to-date as of Jan. 31 was $2.4 million, which is 6 percent higher than the same time in 2021, according to Groveport Finance Director Jason Carr. Carr noted the general fund balance was $9.9 million as of Jan. 31, which is $3.7 million higher than the same time last year. Income tax revenues year-to-date comprised 75 percent of all city revenues, the largest part of all the city’s revenues.
•Grass and weeds better beware because Groveport City Council approved the purchase of a state of the art tractor and mowing deck assembly for the city’s public works department.
The New Holland tractor costs $87,637 and the mowing deck assembly that goes with it costs $65,474. The equipment will be used for roadside mowing and other tasks as needed, according to city officials.
“The tractor replaces a 1986 model tractor that is becoming increasingly unreliable and difficult to repair,” said King.
The mowing deck assembly has a boom arm mower that will make it possible for workers to mow behind guardrails along roads.
Council passed the legislation to make the purchases as emergency measures. King said, this is due to ongoing supply chain issues regarding vehicles and equipment.
“Time is short to assure we can receive this equipment due to availability,” said King.
Added City Council President Jean Ann Hilbert, “When we have one that’s available we have to jump on it.”
•Council is considering legislation to allow Birch Tavern, 639 Main St., to have two parking spots in the municipal parking lot behind the tavern be designated for carryout order parking.