By G. MICHAEL GRAHAM
Fort Thomas Matters Reporter
It may be a pain in the neck to drive on Interstate 471 throughout the summer for commuters from Fort Thomas and surrounding towns going to and from Cincinnati.
But when the work is done, a bigger financial impact may occur for Fort Thomas. The short interstate that goes from Interstate-275 to Interstate-75 is being resurfaced going North and South.
“Hopefully, when this project is completed, our residents who travel I-471 will have easier access to and from work or shopping,” said Don Martin, Fort Thomas City Administrative Officer. “Additionally, if the work being done relieves congestion, it may be easier for people who live elsewhere to visit Fort Thomas businesses.”
Martin said Fort Thomas and neighboring cities do not have any say in the work on I-471. That falls under the guidance of the Kentucky Department of Transportation. But Martin did say he has not heard I-471 is going to become a toll road, unlike what some have suggested.
While crew will work like crazy to expand I-471 this summer, Martin said various streets in Fort Thomas will be repaired and resurfaced this summer. Clover Ridge/Rossford Road between Memorial Parkway and North Fort Thomas Avenue in addition to Mel Lawn and Broadview will receive those upgrades. The good news is those roads will not be closed off during construction.
“Anytime the city resurfaces a street, we require that at least one lane remains open,” Martin said. “However, people who regularly travel Clover Ridge and Rossford may want to find an alternate route depending on where they live.”
The upgrades usually take place between July and September. Martin said the city crews take care of the sidewalks and curbs before the roads receive the resurfacing. Various contractors bid on the resurfacing.
Road construction is often done to make intersections safer. But Martin said there are no roads or intersections that are of major concern.