ODOT releases plans for I-680 projects over next 3 years


YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – If you travel anywhere on Interstate 680 in Mahoning County over the next three years, you can expect to hit some construction at some point.

Ohio Department of Transportation released a plan for several projects — costing a total of $10.5 million — that will span from Spring 2018 to 2021. The longest one will close a heavily used exit ramp for nine months.

“We try to get as many little things done as possible and make them into one big project as much as possible,” said Brent Kovacs of ODOT.

The first project is the biggest — replacing the overpass that goes over Oak Hill Avenue in Youngstown.

The northbound lanes will be shut down for thirty days as crews replace the bridge and fill in the sides with asphalt. Following that one comes five more projects extending all the way into 2021.

“This project, though, it seems like a lot,” Kovacs said. “But it’s just doing a lot of minor work to a bunch of bridges.”

The longest project will start in 2019 when the 7-11 Southbound exit ramp to the 680 is closed for nine months.The Belle Vista Avenue entrance ramp to Northbound 680 will also close for 45 days that year.

Then, in 2020 extending into 2021, the Mahoning Avenue ramp to Southbound 680 will close for 60 days. Plus, the Southbound 680 ramp to South Avenue will close for 14 days.

Construction crews are also going to install a median cable barrier between the Meridian Road and Belle Vista exits.

“Cable median barrier prevents cross median crashes,” Kovacs said. “And we can also look at some speed limits in the area once we do that.”

ODOT is working on detours and alternate routes right now. They hope to have that information out soon.