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Published: Monday, 3/11/2013

Street-work plans to be discussed

Series of neighborhood meetings in Toledo start Tuesday

BY DAVID PATCH
BLADE STAFF WRITER

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Explaining how Toledo officials chose 61 miles of streets for rebuilding or repaving this year, while taking suggestions for future projects, will be the purpose of a neighborhood meeting series that starts this week with sessions in West Toledo and East Toledo.

The street planning forums will be held in each of Toledo’s six city council districts, starting with the District 5 meeting Tuesday evening at the Sanger Branch Library, 3030 W. Central Ave.

City officials will review the list of streets to be improved this year and detail the project selection process, according to a city statement.

Along with providing contact information, city administrators will be available to work with residents in small groups to get ideas for planning Toledo’s 2014 streets program. The two-hour meetings will start at 6 p.m.

Robin Whitney, the city’s commissioner of engineering services, said the format will resemble that of similar meetings last year. Toledo’s sources of street project funding — which include the Ohio Department of Transportation, the Ohio Public Works Commission, and federal funds distributed by the Toledo Metropolitan Council of Governments — will be explained, as will the city’s budget picture.

“We have limited resources — we’re still only taking one bite out of the apple,” and consequently the city can’t do every project requested, Ms. Whitney said.

“We want to get input and ideas from people on what streets they think are important,” she said.

The second meeting this week will be for Council District 3 and is to be Thursday at the East Toledo Family Center, 1020 Varland Ave.

After that, the meeting schedule is:

● District 4, March 20, Frederick Douglass Community Center, 1001 Indiana Ave.

● District 2, March 21, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church, Sherwood Avenue at the Anthony Wayne Trail

● District 1, April 1, Bethlehem Baptist Church, 1430 W. Bancroft St.

● District 6, April 2, Point Place Branch Library, 2727 117th St.

After several years of lean capital budgets, the Bell administration plans to match $21 million in city funds with $23 million in state and federal funds during this municipal election year to pursue a $44 million street repair and reconstruction program.

The 61-mile program includes several projects started last year, including repaving Summit Street between Lagrange and Bush streets and repairs and bridge work on Westwood Avenue between Bancroft Street and Oakwood Avenue.

One of this year’s biggest and most disruptive projects, rebuilding Secor Road between Central Avenue and Monroe Street, is less than a mile away from the site of Tuesday’s meeting. Work began Sunday.

The program includes a controversial reconstruction project on Collingwood Boulevard between Monroe and Central that is scheduled to start next month and be finished next year, but could be delayed by a dispute over the planned cutting of dozens of curbside trees.

Some of the trees were cut down last month before federal officials ordered it to halt pending more review of the project’s effects on the historic Old West End neighborhood.

Other major streets on the 2013 project list include Alexis Road between Lewis Avenue and Telegraph Road; Bancroft between the city limits and Reynolds Road; East Broadway between Woodville Road and Sixth Street; Main Street between Front and Sixth streets, and Miami Street between I-75 and Oakdale Avenue.

Mileage on streets with four or more lanes is counted double.

Contact David Patch at: dpatch@theblade.com or 419-724-6094.



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