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* News Release *
Friday, March 21, 2003
For Immediate Release

State Issue 2 Grant to Fund Projects

Butler County Engineer Greg Wilkens reports that a contract for five bridge replacements is scheduled to get under way beginning Monday. Crews will start work on Stout Road in Oxford Township where a narrow, one-lane bridge built in 1950 will be replaced with a new two-lane structure. Also slated for replacement are bridges on Canal Road in Fairfield Township, Howe Road in Madison Township, Huston Road in Milford Township, and Stillwell Road in Hanover Township.

"This is part of our continuing effort to address weakening bridge structures in Butler County," Wilkens said. "Many of these bridges were built over 50 years ago and were not designed to handle today's traffic volumes and heavier vehicles. More importantly, weathering and natural deterioration present additional safety concerns." Three of the five bridges are currently posted with load limit restrictions, according to Wilkens.

A contract for all five projects was awarded to W.G. Stang, Inc., of St. Clair Township, which submitted a low bid of $704,241. All work is scheduled for completion by this fall. The bridges will be replaced utilizing funds from the State's OPWC (Ohio Public Works Commission) Issue 2 grant program. Wilkens secured the grant money in 2002, a portion of which was applied to two bridge replacements last fall and will help pay for two intersection improvements this summer. "State Issue 2 funds have become a critical source of outside revenue for the Engineer's Office," Wilkens emphasized. "It is an efficient and highly effective means to solve existing infrastructure problems because it does not have a lot of the red tape associated with other funding sources."

Enacted in 1987 and renewed by Ohio voters in 1995, the State Capital Improvements Program enables the state to issue $120 million in bonds each year to provide grants, loans, and financing for local debt support and credit enhancement to local communities for the improvement of their basic infrastructure systems.

~ Photo: Old Stout Road bridge.
~ Photo: Old Canal Road bridge.
~ Photo: Old Howe Road bridge.
~ Photo: Old Huston Road bridge.
~ Photo: Old Stillwell Road bridge.

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For more information contact:

Chris Petrocy, BCEO Public Information Supervisor
Greg Wilkens, P.E., P.S., Butler County Engineer
Phone 513.867.5744 • Fax 513.867.5849

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