SR 7 segment to remain one-lane

Road crew workers begin removing the shoulder line from the portion of Ohio 7 that intersects with Ohio 124. Ohio 7 at this junction will remain closed for the forseeable future, with the entrance of Ohio 124 closed from July 13-Aug. 3.

POMEROY — This week saw Ohio 7 reduced to one lane at the intersection with Ohio 124.

And according to David Rose, ODOT District 10 public information officer, this won’t be changing anytime soon.

The construction comes after the announcement that ODOT’s widening project at this intersection was moved up a year in advance. The project consists of adding turn lanes and a traffic signal at state routes 124 and 7, as well as realigning Township Road 196 and enhancing the Park and Ride entrance.

Highway crew flaggers are currently helping navigate traffic through the one-lane corridor, and will continue to do so unless ODOT decides to install a temporary stoplight. Crew members are also removing the shoulder line from the area, which allows for the crew to measure width restrictions and make sure larger vehicles can still pass through.

While one lane of traffic on Ohio 7 will be maintained throughout the project, the entrance of Ohio 124 that intersects with Ohio 7 will be closed from July 13-Aug. 3.

During the 21-day closure, ODOT can only reroute a detour on state and U.S. routes, but said he knows that local people will know the quickest and best detours.

“Each project has to submit a kind of critical path for construction because, obviously, things change,” he said. “We’re asking people to to slow down, be patient and don’t drive distracted through the work zone.”

An Ohio 143 project is also in the works, but will take longer due to the need for an environmental study and right-of-way project development, but that there is enough room at the intersection of state routes 124 and 7 to add a turn lane and a traffic stop, making the Ohio 124 project easier and quicker.

According to the latest information, Rose said the Ohio 143 project will begin in 2017, with bids for the project going out in July of that year.

He added that having a stop light at the Ohio 7 and Ohio 124 intersection will help break up traffic and make it safer for people to pull out of side roads.

“We are excited and glad we can get the project advanced ahead of schedule,” Rose said. “It will be good for the community and motorists in Meigs County.”

Reach Lindsay Kriz at 740-992-2155 EXT. 2555.