Price & Safety Concerns Top Agenda Items At Arlington U.S. 68 Update Meeting

8/30/17 – 12:40 P.M.

Several officials talked about the status of upgrading U.S. 68 through Arlington during a Wednesday meeting. Councilman Brian Essinger says it’s critically important to rebuild the highway that runs through the village…

Audio:Brian Essinger

Essinger says he is hoping to get $800,000 to $1 million in outside funding for the project. He adds he’s looking for a mix of funding from ODOT, as well as Ohio Public Works Commission grants and zero-interest loans. The ideal situation would see Arlington spend a total of $30,000 in matching funds, but the village could borrow up to $500,000 over 30 years to fund the work.

Essinger says it’s more than a repaving project…

Audio:Brian Essinger

Phase 1 will start next summer. That will rebuild the highway from the bridge over Buck Run to the stop light at Liberty Street. Essinger adds Phase 2 is very likely to happen in 2020. That would rebuild U.S. 6 from Liberty Street to just past the school.

Essinger says without funding from outside agencies Phase 3 becomes more difficult. That part of the project takes place between the Buck Run bridge and Wardwell Street.

On the subject of safety, many had concerns about possibly removing the stoplight at the intersection of U.S. 68 and Liberty Street. Essinger says they are working with ODOT to try and keep it in place…

Audio:Brian Essinger

Engineers from ODOT have to evaluate the merits of the light, and preliminary indications are that it could be removed. State laws prevent the light from only serving as a speed control device.

U.S. 68 through Arlington is the third busiest highway in Hancock County. Thousands of vehicles can pass through on any given day. Village officials say the repair is a major issue for the entire county because the highway serves as a truck route for many Findlay businesses.