Loading…
Friday, July 25, 2014
Current Weather
Loading Current Weather....
HomeNewsState
Published: Wednesday, 5/23/2012

State seeks sponsors for rest areas

BLADE STAFF

The Ohio Department of Transportation has begun soliciting bids from anyone interested in sponsoring one or more of the 101 rest areas along the state's highways and freeways.

"This new program will help us do two things: reduce the amount of money ODOT spends on rest-area maintenance, and generate new money we can use to pay for some of the major construction projects communities have told us they want," department Director Jerry Wray said.

The program "demonstrates that ODOT is serious about ... seeking innovative and alternative funding sources to pay for road construction in Ohio," Mr. Wray said.

The transportation department spends between $30 million and $50 million annually for rest-area maintenance, including electricity, heating, water, and sewage.

Department officials said sponsorships and advertising revenue "will help ODOT offset a portion" of those expenses as well as provide funds for road improvements.

The Kasich administration is spending more than $3 million in federal and state funds to assess options for leasing the Ohio Turnpike, outsourcing its maintenance, or combining it with the department of transportation, with a consultants' report expected late this year.

The transportation department also is considering commercialization options for rest areas not along interstate highways as well as naming-rights offers for state-owned transportation assets as possible revenue sources.

The transportation department said the additional revenues will help it close a $1.6 billion "budget hole" announced early this year that prompted postponements of numerous highway improvement projects.

In the Toledo area, delayed projects include the McCord Road underpass in Holland and the final phase of rebuilding the I-75/I-475 junction in central Toledo.



Guidelines: Please keep your comments smart and civil. Don't attack other readers personally, and keep your language decent. If a comment violates these standards or our privacy statement or visitor's agreement, click the "X" in the upper right corner of the comment box to report abuse. To post comments, you must be a Facebook member. To find out more, please visit the FAQ.

Related stories








Poll