U.S. Route 23 Study Begins, Public Input Opportunities in July
The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission and its peer organization in Toledo are teaming up with the Ohio Department of Transportation District 6 on a new study that will evaluate options for improvements to U.S. 23 between Waldo, in Marion County, and Interstate 270 in Franklin County.
This study, the Route 23 Connect Study, will determine the feasibility of creating a free-flow connection between Columbus and Toledo. The corridor routinely experiences bottlenecks, congestion, and unreliable travel times. With some sections of U.S. 23 already over-capacity, traffic volumes through Delaware County are expected to increase as the region continues to grow.
In addition to serving area residents, U.S. 23 is one of Ohio’s most important freight corridors, connecting Central Ohio with Toledo and trade partners in Michigan and Canada.
Of the 30,000 vehicles that travel U.S. 23 north of Delaware each day, nearly one in every seven vehicles is a semi-truck. The amount of traffic increases in Franklin County to nearly 80,000 vehicles per day at the I-270 interchange. Along with evaluating the existing route, the study will consider new routes to the east or west of U.S. 23, which would avoid the nearly 40 traffic signals along this stretch.
Public Input Opportunities
Virtual public meetings to learn more about the needs for the corridor and purpose of the study will be held in July and can be attended by joining online at publicinput.com/23connect or by phone at 1-855-925-2801 with meeting code 4637.
Due to the large geographic area and population affected by U.S. 23, the study area has been divided into smaller groups. The same information will be presented at each meeting, so if someone cannot attend their community’s meeting, they may attend any meeting that fits their schedule.
- Northwest Communities (A) – Wednesday, July 7 – 12:00 PM
- Northeast Communities (B) – Wednesday, July 7 – 5:00 PM
- Central Communities (C) – Tuesday, July 13 – 12:00 PM
- Southwest Communities (D) – Tuesday, July 13 – 5:00 PM
- South Communities (E) – Wednesday, July 14 – 12:00 PM
- Southeast Communities (F) – Wednesday, July 14 – 5:00 PM
Individuals who require interpretation services or a reasonable accommodation to participate in the meetings or who wish to request a paper copy of the survey or project materials should contact Anthony Turowski, project manager, at (740) 833-8186 prior to June 30, 2021. Public participation is solicited without regard to race, color, sex, age, national origin or disability.
Public comments may be submitted at transportation.ohio.gov/23connect or directed to Anthony Turowski. While there will be many opportunities to provide feedback throughout this study, comments following these meetings should be received by August 16, 2021.
Ahead of the meetings, ODOT is conducting an online survey to gain a better understanding of the public’s perspective. Area drivers and residents are asked to take the survey at publicinput.com/23connect.