The Ohio Department of Transportation said Wednesday that plans for installing a guardrail along the center of state Route 18 (Medina Road) from Windfall Road to Medina Line Road have been “shelved.”
ODOT had proposed guardrails along the corridor between Windfall and Medina Line roads. The proposal was aimed at reducing accidents on that stretch of highway.
Business owners, however, expressed concerns about trucks making deliveries from the east. If there were guardrails, trucks would have to turn around at one of the intersections and travel east to businesses on the Sharon Township side of Route 18.
ODOT District 3 Deputy Director Howard Huebner said in a statement that the agency remains committed to “accomplish our goal of a safer road to travel on.”
Since last April, ODOT began implementing “countermeasures” to reduce crashes in that area of Route 18. The agency said since 2008, there have been 480 crashes on the five-mile corridor and seven resulted in nine fatalities.
Changes ODOT has made include:
- Four speed-limit feedback signs.
- Rumble strips along the outside edge line and throughout the center turn lane.
- Wider pavement markings.
- Increased “delineation” at intersections with more than 1,300 raised pavement markers on center lines, lane lines and edge lines at stop approaches.
The news release said additional long-term plans are “being designed.” They include:
- Adding right-turn lanes on Route 18 and state Route 94, and on Route 18 at Windfall Road.
- Side-mounted signal heads at signal intersections.
- Coordinated signal timing.
“We have said from the beginning of this process that adding the guardrail was a last resort,” Huebner said. “We cannot compromise safety, but we also don’t want to cause an unnecessary inconvenience to the businesses and property owners along state Route 18.”