Blanchard Street Project
Many comments, both in support and not in support, were received from the community regarding proposed changes for Blanchard Street. We have read and responded to all comments received during the comment period, which ended September 6th.
The pdf file below contains a summary report of the comments received as well as all of the actual comments. (Names, addresses, etc., have been redacted.)
More information on the project can be found below.
Information Regarding the Proposed Blanchard Street Reconfiguration
For the previous few years the City of Findlay (City) has submitted applications for funding for projects through the Transportation Alternative Program (TAP) which is funded by the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT). In mid-2016, after receiving approval from Council, the City submitted an application which requested funding for a multiuse path on Lincoln St. from Cory to Blanchard St., a multiuse path on Blanchard Street from 6th St. to the existing path on the Northside of the river, and adding sharrow lanes on Sandusky St. from Blanchard St. to CR236.
Following review of our application, ODOT determined that the Sandusky St. project was not warranted at this time and only approved funding for the Lincoln and Blanchard projects. The TAP grant funding was for 95% of construction up to $1.25 Million.
In January of 2018, the City requested qualifications from engineering firms. We received qualifications from 8 firms and half of the firms recommended a redistribution of lane widths. It was believed that modifying the lane widths would increase the safety of the corridor while also accommodating future projected traffic volumes.
In May of 2018, the City had our standard walkthrough with ODOT. During this meeting, ODOT had concerns about the work on Blanchard Street and did not believe that the multiuse path along the side of the road could be accommodated. This was due to the limited space and the need for ADA Compliance. Additionally, they believed that a more efficient and safer layout for the corridor could be generated from a redistribution of lanes. After receiving recommendations from various firms, ODOT, and permission from Traffic Commission, the City requested the selected consultant complete an additional traffic and safety study.
This study was shared with Council on October 2nd, 2018 and funds were requested to apply for Safety Funds through ODOT to compliment the funding received through the TAP Grant. On October 10th, 2018, ODOT approved a safety grant for 90% of construction up to $1.5 Million. This was for lane distribution, resurfacing, bike lanes, and traffic signal improvements from 6th Street to Tiffin Avenue.
As of July 30th, 2019 the selected consultant GPD Group is working to complete additional renderings and the City along with ODOT should have final plans and specifications completed by the end of October.
- This project will improve safety at 17 intersections along the Blanchard Street corridor.
- 5 Intersections with left turn lanes will have traffic lights left turn signals.
- Predicted decrease rear end and t bone crashes in this corridor.
- See section below for full Corridor and Safety Study.
- A 0.50% annual growth rate was applied when projecting the 2039 traffic volumes which were utilized in the safety study.
- The street width is not changing. Should actual traffic volumes increase beyond the 2039 projected level of service, accommodations can be made to serve pedestrians and cyclists in a different way.
- See section below for Summary of Travel Time Analysis
Estimated Cost Breakdown
Grants = $2,523,363
Local = $214,789
Total Construction Cost = $2,738,153
Max. Eligible for Reimbursement = $78,504
Local = $113,165
Total Construction Inspection Cost = $191,670
Total Project Cost = $2,929,823
Max City of Findlay Share = $327,955
Cost to City if Safety Grant is Not Used
The City must continue to maintain pavement and signals for Blanchard Street.
Estimated City tax dollars required to fund capital investment in signals & pavement = $1,300,000
An open house meeting was held on August 21st and a formal comment period was open from August 5th to September 6th. At this time the City is working with ODOT to review comments and bring back options to City Council.
Traffic Analysis/Graphics and Safety Study