Township supports bridge project, service department plans expansion

by Laura Bednar

March 20 township trustees meeting

The Bath Township trustees supported the Summit County Engineer’s plan to replace the High-Level Bridge on State Road that connects Cuyahoga Falls and Akron. The engineering and design of the bridge replacement is estimated to be $8.6 million with construction costs between $55-60 million.

The county is seeking community support as it applies for federal funding. According to a letter the trustees sent to Congresswoman Emilia Strong Sykes and Senator Sherrod Brown, the bridge was built in 1948 and “the structure is categorized as fracture critical, meaning if one element of the bridge fails, the entire bridge will fail. Current bridge design standards require structures to have redundancy built in to prevent catastrophic failures.”

Trustee President Sharon Troike explained that the Summit County Engineer’s Office has annual revenue of $19 million, and funding the design portion alone would be 45% of its budget.

“The Summit County Engineer’s office recently awarded a $400,000 preliminary engineering contract for Phase I of the project, which is funded with all local funds, as well as budgeting $2.14 million over the next five years towards the planning and design project. In addition, the cities of Akron and Cuyahoga Falls made financial commitments for the Bridge Investment Program grant application of $250,000 and $200,000 respectively,” according to the letter.

Service expansion

The service department will pay Four Points Architectural Services $6,750 for preliminary architectural schematic design and a cost estimate for the expansion of its building.

Service Director Caine Collins said the plan is to expand the existing building to the east. Updates would include increased number of restroom facilities, more locker rooms, larger storage and workshop areas and offices for mechanics.

In other news

James McClellan, a volunteer with the Heritage Corridors of Bath, said a subcommittee is researching the history of the more than 60 barns in the township with the intent of creating a book about them.

Additionally, the committee plans to hold a tour of barns with quilts or other artwork on them. The project is in its early stages and a call for volunteers will be forthcoming, according to McClellan.

Bath Police Department chose Getac as the vendor for its body and dash cameras. The body-worn cameras are $44,436, and the township will receive complete reimbursement through the Ohio Criminal Justice Services. The dash cameras cost $48,608 and will be partially covered through a $25,000 private donation.

Renovations at 1581 Hickory Farm Lane in the Bath Nature Preserve continue with the township paying $12,150 to Frost Tile and Marble for bathroom updates and $10,000 to Miller Roofing & Exteriors for a new roof, downspout and gutters. ∞