Friday, July 28, 2017

I-90 Public Hearing – August 1964

I found this article after I prepared yesterday's post about Route 254. It ran in the Lorain Journal on August 6, 1964 and is a report on a public hearing about a proposed I-90 segment designed to connect up with the Ohio Turnpike just west of Route 57.

The idea was to allow I-90 traffic to have its own Ohio Turnpike interchange to alleviate congestion at the Route 57 interchange. As we know, it was eventually built.

Here's the article (below). Note how State Route 254 figures prominently in the article; indeed on the accompanying map, you can see that today's State Route 2 was originally indicated to be the "proposed SR 254."

Perhaps the real reason the terminus of Route 254 was later moved from Route 58 to Route 57 is because that's where the road connected up with I-90, the Ohio Turnpike and State Route 2.


IR-90 Backed At Public Hearing

ELYRIA – Reactions to the proposed IR-90 route from the Ohio Turnpike to SR-57 were recorded yesterday at a public hearing at the Holiday Inn on SR-57.

The majority of the 35 persons present endorsed the new four-lane, limited access 3.7-mile-long road which begins on the turnpike in Amherst Twp., and is planned to connect with SR-254 at Rt. 57.

But some individuals who live close to the proposed road expressed fears about possible devaluation of their property by the construction of the route.

Donald H. Timmer, deputy director of Division Three, Ohio Department of Highways at Ashland, who conducted the hearing, said the need for the road has been determined through a joint study made by the U. S. Bureau of Pubic Roads, the Ohio Department of Highways and the Ohio Turnpike Commission.

The route reportedly will make it possible for all IR-90 traffic, estimated to be about 8,000 vehicles per day, to have its own turnpike interchange, thereby relieving the traffic load at the Lorain-Elyria turnpike exchange on Rt. 57.

The highway department does not plan to build the road until the late 1960's, Timmer said.

The new route will begin on the Ohio Turnpike 6 miles west of West Ridge Rd., and will swing north and east, crossing over Murray Ridge Rd., .2 miles north of Griswold Rd. It will continue east to connect with the proposed relocation of Rt. 254.

Timmer said the highway department has a Relocation Assistance Advisory group to help individuals or firms who have to relocate because of the new route. In cases where buildings must be moved, the person affected may get moving expenses paid, he added.

Toll facilities for the new route will be located on the Ohio Turnpike in Amherst Twp.

J. Norman Thompson, speaking as the chairman of the Main Thoroughfare Committee of the Lorain County Regional Planning Commission, said the committee, composed of representatives of cities, villages, townships, labor and industry, was 100 percent in favor of the route. He estimated that traffic from the proposed interstate system will help cause a spillover of 10,000 cars daily on Route 57 which will be mainly absorbed by the through route of IR-90 traffic.

Thompson said he would like to see the route programmed sooner than 1970.

Mrs. Ruth Collins, Elyria, said she was opposed to the additional traffic noise the route might bring but felt that the county must have good roads.

Mrs. Rose Bodor, who lives near the proposed route but not in the right-of-way path, expressed fears for her rental property's possible devaluation because of the road noise.

Robert Mascero, Elyria, who lives immediately south of the project, requested additional consideration because of possible devaluation of his property.

Mrs. Andrew Trimmel, Elyria, said she was worried that vibrations from the traffic would affect their newly built greenhouse there.

Mrs. Walter Halin, who lives 250 feet from the turnpike now, said she felt the county needed the road, but said she would not continue to live that close to both routes.

James P. Horn, chairman of the Lorain County Commission, said the commission favored the route because it would alleviate traffic on Rt. 57 and that it had been working toward necessary four-lane arterial highways for Lorain County.

Oliver E. Schubert, an Oberlin teacher and former resident of the area of the proposed route wanted more talk about plans to help the people and said the objectors should be represented by someone to talk for them.

A. J. Lehman of Lehman and Johnson Real Estate Brokers endorsed the route as being beneficial to most of the people. Lehman said realtors as well as individuals have suffered individual losses by new highways but that they were beneficial in the long run to all concerned.

Art Neiding, 624 Murray Ridge Rd., said he felt that the route should be started even farther westward on farm land and not in built up property.

Timmer said that a court recording of the hearing would be forwarded to the Ohio Director of Highways for his consideration before the route is journalized.

Here's the map of the same area today.


K Camera said...

Hey Dan,
Your write up on 254 got me thinking about a couple of old maps I have from the '60s that showed a proposed freeway named 254 cutting through the east side. It paralleled Colorado ave but stopped at the Black river. Do you remember that? I always wondered why the planners originally proposed the route through a densely populated area. In hindsight, it may have been good for Lorain to have a freeway cut through town. But maybe not, it would have disrupted a lot of families.

Dan Brady said...

I think I do remember reading about a proposed freeway designed to provide quicker lakefront access. There seems to have been a couple of proposals that had that objective. I guess Route 611 accomplished that goal more or less, although it’s just a dinky road west of Kansas Avenue.

Dennis Thompson said...

I checked my Commercial Survey Street Guide (updated to 1976) which has several proposed highways. It does not show the 254 re-route so it must have been a dead issue by then. It does show Rt 254 going all the way west to Leavitt Rd.

michael syrowski said...

What about the proposed Tower Blvd. continuation that was suppose to connect the west side the east?

Dan Brady said...

Hi Michael! Great point – I’d heard of that one most of my life, yet we still have to use W.33rd/Meister.