County commissioners Monday morning talked about the Gemini Parkway Extension being opened Thursday evening. Rob Riley, deputy engineer, said the new road should reduce Polaris traffic by about 20 percent east of I-71.
“It’s very nice,” said Commissioner Gary Merrell. “It was Saturday evening about four or five o’clock, actually there was quite a bit of traffic on it.”
Riley told commissioners he didn’t think a lot of people really knew it was open. “Traffic patterns will change over the next week.” he said. “They’re still figuring it out.”
The project involved funding from five different government agencies. “I think it was one of the best examples of government agency cooperation,” Riley said.
Merrell said the commissioners had received an email stating that Nov. 4 is the tentative completion date for Sawmill Parkway.
“November fourth or there about,” Riley said. “Much depends on the next couple of weeks, but that’s our target date.”
Riley said getting the utilities moved in a “timely manor has been a challenge” in getting projects completed. “We’re not the only ones,” he said. “I know our surrounding agencies, talking to them, they’ve also struggled with keeping their projects on schedule.”
Commissioners approved a return of a cash advance for the South Old State Improvement Project.
“The South Old State improvement project has federal funding through ODOT,” Riley said. “We are now getting reimbursements back from ODOT.”
Riley said the reimbursement was for 80 percent of the $4.9 million projected cost for right-of-way rights.
County commissioner Jeff Benton asked if this represents all of the advances.
“It does not; we still have a ways to go.” Riley said. “We’re maybe half the way through in terms of the reimbursements.”
Benton mentioned that Orange Road West was now open. “It looks real nice,” he said. “That’s the good news.”
“The bad news is we’re moving to the east now,” Riley said.
On the recommendation of the Engineer’s Office, commissioners approved:
• The speed limits and stopping conditions for a number of subdivisions that had completed one-year developer maintenance periods.
• Three owners agreements related to Northstar section number three. Two involve the internal street and storm water improvement within the subdivision. One involved the widening of Wilson Road for the turn lane required for the entrance.
Riley told commissioners there are about 59 lots in that section of Northstar and he expects it will be this time next year the projects will be finished.
D. Anthony Botkin may be reached at 740-413-0902 or on Twitter @dabotkin.