(From the Ohio Department of Transportation)
The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) will close the rest areas on U.S. 23 in Wyandot County and U.S. 30 in Van Wert County on Thursday, Jan. 11, for demolition and replacement.
The work is anticipated to close the rest areas for approximately one year. The locations will be entirely closed with barricades, including the parking lots.
In Wyandot County, the northbound rest area is located near the village of Carey (mile marker 20.5), and the southbound is located near the city of Upper Sandusky (mile marker 17). The rebuild in Wyandot County will replace all existing structures and construct additional parking areas.
The Van Wert County rest areas are located on U.S. 30 near the village of Convoy (mile marker 8.5). The Van Wert project will replace all existing buildings and resurface parking areas.
The new facilities are expected to open in 2025.
The contractor for both projects is Mosser Construction, Fremont. The Ohio Facilities Construction Commission (OFCC) is administering the construction contracts.
The new structures will be a lodge-style design with everything under one roof, including larger restrooms with adult changing tables, a lobby area with vending and regional tourism information, and an attached and covered outdoor picnic area. Included in the new design are landscape upgrades that include Ohio native plants.
ODOT District 1 Deputy Director Chris Hughes notes that with the closures of the rest facilities, larger numbers of commercial trucks in the area may park for extended periods along highway entrance and exit ramps.
“We don’t anticipate any issues with the expected increase in trucks parked along ramps, but it is something to be aware of as a passing motorist,” he said.
Through the inconvenience during the closures, Hughes hopes the end result will remain the focus. “We’re excited to provide a fresh and welcoming travel experience for all motorists,” said Hughes.
The nearest open rest areas on U.S. 23 will be those just south of the city of Marion, and on U.S. 30, those to the east in Allen County, near State Route 65, north of the city of Lima.
In May, Governor Mike DeWine announced a plan to update 33 rest areas across 17 locations with all new buildings. Additional parking is also being added where possible. Ohio has 85 rest areas located along major highways, not including those maintained by the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission.