MOUNT VERNON — Changes in traffic patterns are in store for area motorists once the construction projects on Coshocton Avenue are complete this fall. Crews with the Ohio Department of Transportation are overseeing the projects which are aimed at easing the flow of traffic and eliminating congestion in the area.
One change that motorists are already seeing is additional right in/right out entrances and exits at numerous businesses. These are small curved sections of concrete placed at berm height in the middle of entrances/exits which prohibit motorists from making a left-hand turn in or out. ODOT project manager Steve Miller explained that their purpose is to eliminate left-turn motorists from blocking traffic near the intersections. These are being installed along Coshocton Avenue at the entrances to Big Lots and Arby’s, and along Vernonview Drive at the entrances to Big Lots and Kroger.
The entrance into Kroger to the east side of Chipotle Mexican Grill is scheduled to be permanently closed as part of the construction project. This will mean that motorists wanting to leave Kroger and turn left to travel eastbound will have to exit either at the Vernedale Drive intersection or along the east end of the plaza parking lot onto Vernonview Drive. Temporary signs alerting motorists to the “no left-hand turns” are being installed which will eventually be replaced with permanent signs. “We’re looking at options on how to help motorists negotiate these changes,” said Miller.
Numerous lane changes on Coshocton Avenue will be taking place in the coming months. This is designed to eliminate what Miller calls a “choke point.” The stretch between the Center Run bridge and Shalimar Drive will be widened and will include a center turn lane, making it consistent with the stretch west of the bridge to Park Street.