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I-90 Nagel Interchange Opening By End of Month

Project opens nine months ahead of schedule.

The long awaited I-90 / Nagel Road interchange is expected to open at the end of December, Project Manager Don Damyanic and Mayor Jim Smith confirmed today.

“We’ll know about 72 hours ahead of time,” Smith said of the opening, which is 9 months ahead of schedule. “It’s a moving target; the weather has a lot to do with it.”

Damyanic announced earlier this week that three roads would re-open tomorrow, Dec. 5.

“All of the paving and striping is now complete,” Damyanic said. “What is left are traffic signals, lights, signs, and some safety items. We have had to wait on First Energy to complete some work as their forces are thinned as many workers are still on the east coast after the hurricane.”

Smith said the opening will most likely include a ribbon cutting and a ceremony at Petitti’s Garden Center in Avon.

The groundbreaking for the interchange was Sept. 14, 2011.

“We’ll probably have some coffee and donuts at   and a ceremony,” Smith said. “I’ll probably have a few things to say. After all, this is the first time a city has done this on its own.”

Smith expects state and local officials, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) and NOACA officials to be present and speak as well.

The project, 16 years in the making, is well ahead of schedule. It involved a drawn out battle with city officials in Cuyahoga County, many of whom initially opposed the project.

In 2007, a group of Cuyahoga County officials said they wanted Avon to share income taxes from development built around the proposed interchange area before they would approve the interchange. Opposition came from Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, Cuyahoga County Commissioner Tim Hagan and Bay Village Mayor Debbie Sutherland.

After being told Patch readers have been asking about the Interchange’s opening, Smith said. “I’ve been asking about it for 16 years.”

“This has been trying,” Smith said. “This has been very stressful. I said 16 years ago, ‘eventually we’re going to have to have (an interchange) done. Avon, Avon Lake and North Ridgeville are growing. You’re going to need the extra interchange.'”

According to a 2010 application to ODOT, the cost of the project, paid 100 percent by the city of Avon, was $23.7 million and would serve as the main access point for the “future Cleveland Clinic hospital/office facilities.” That facility has since opened.

“Now we can serve the Clinic better,” Smith said.

Smith noted the interchange opening nine months early meant a cost savings, including less required inspections.

“Don and (City Engineer) Rob (Knopf) have done a great job,” Smith said. He also cited cooperation with ODOT and Mosser Construction with keeping the project ahead of schedule.  

Smith and Damyanic said there are still some minor cosmetic touches needed before the Interchange will be considered 100 percent complete in 2013.

Glen Heitkamp December 06, 2012 at 04:16 AM
I must be the worst reader; a few days ago the Patch ran an article that included "According to Damyanic’s office, work on the I--90 / Nagel Road interchange is 90 percent complete. The I-90 / Nagel Road interchange is scheduled for final completion in July of 2013, ahead of initial projections." Now this article says it will open at the end of the month? What am I missing here? When I saw 10% work left and July 2013 completion in the last article I was not thinking it would open at the end of the month. Am I the only confused person here?
Lori E. Switaj December 06, 2012 at 04:33 AM
Glen, at the time that was written, the 90 percent number was what was available for release. It will still not be "100 percent" complete when it opens, mostly due to some cosmetic items needed to be finished. There is still work being completed in the upcoming weeks to ensure it can open. The information in the above article was just released this week.
Glen Heitkamp December 07, 2012 at 01:14 PM
Thanks Lori, The Patch, you and your team at the Patch Rock! I enjoy reading what is happening in Avon and reading the comments; it is a great stress reliever during my travels. I am in awe of your dedication to local news and the amount of time it takes to organize the Patch for what I assume is little pay.

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