By Steve Kemme
The Cincinnati Enquirer
SPRINGDALE - Within a few weeks, motorists will be able to drive in all the lanes of a newly widened section of busy East Kemper Road.
The $1.1 million project to widen and improve East Kemper from Chesterdale Drive to Old Commons Drive will end as soon as crews complete the little paving that remains and paint lane and traffic markings on the street.
It's the second phase of a three-phase plan to widen East Kemper, a road whose traffic has increased in recent years because of new commercial development. Target, Dick's Sporting Goods, Best Buy and Barnes & Noble Booksellers are just a few of the businesses that have been built on East Kemper in the past few years.
"We have seen major development along that corridor," Springdale City Manager Cecil Osborn said. "We have to continue with the widening project until we complete all three phases."
Eric Heyser, general manager of Romano's Macaroni Grill, said he wishes the road widening could have been done all at once.
"It seems like it's taking them a little longer than necessary," he said. "But once they get it done, it will definitely help traffic because this is a very congested area."
The next and last phase of this project will be to widen East Kemper from the Tri-County Parkway to Old Commons Drive and to replace or widen the bridge over the CSX railroad tracks.
"It's more complicated because of the bridge," said Pat Madl. project engineer with CDS Associations Inc. in Kenwood, which handles Springdale's engineering work.
The third-phase construction work won't begin until the summer of next year.
The first phase involved the widening of East Kemper from Northland to Tri-County Parkway.
"Stopping after the first two phases would leave traffic bottlenecks," Osborn said, "and would diminish what we've already accomplished."
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