© 2022 WKSU
Public Radio News for Northeast Ohio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Route 8 Construction Will Resume in 2021 But in the Opposite Direction

a photo of route 8 with sign
Kabir Bhatia
Route 8's north bound lanes got a makeover in 2020. Southbound lanes get their chance in 2021.

The coronavirus pandemic impacted many government agencies – but it did not change the Ohio Department of Transportation’s plans for Route 8 in Summit County.

Normally, there are six lanes on the stretch of Route 8 between Akron and the highway’s junction with the Ohio Turnpike. The $58 million reconstruction project has been closing two lanes at a time over the past two years, and that will continue – on schedule – early this spring on what had been the right and center southbound lanes.

Last year’s work began just as the coronavirus pandemic hit, but ODOT spokesman Ray Marsh says it only had one relatively minor impact.

“The contractors are practicing all the safety protocols, maintaining their distance as they can, wearing their masks and everything. Our contractor was able to work all through all of last year, so we're hoping for that same thing to happen this year," Marsh said.

“It did kind of benefit our contractors to be able to get in and out of the construction zone – it was just able to get material in just a little bit quicker with those lower traffic counts.”

Marsh adds that 2022 will be the final phase of the project, when all six lanes receive a final resurfacing.

Kabir Bhatia is a senior reporter for Ideastream Public Media's arts & culture team.