Taxpayers paying millions on Eastern Corridor Project

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - City, county and state leaders have talked about the Eastern Corridor Project for years, but still construction to most of the project has not been completed.

The state and county are spending millions of dollars for the development. So far taxpayers have paid $44 million.

"With all the improvements, we can reduce the number of vehicle miles traveled in the region by 50-million miles per year," said Ted Hubbard, Hamilton County Engineer.  "We can reduce accident causing delays by 15-thousand vehicle hours per day."

Those figures came from a preliminary engineering and environmental study that ODOT spent more than $19.2 million on.  While the Hamilton County Transportation Improvement District kicked in nearly $9.3 million.

Other work administered by ODOT includes:

- $4.1 million paid to consultants for a "Relocation of State Rt. 32" study.

- $3.5 million for an environmental analysis and preliminary engineering study for the Red Bank Corridor.

- $4.8 million for the same type of study for the Oasis Rail segment of the Eastern Corridor Project.

Meanwhile, the Hamilton County Transportation Improvement District (HCTID) has already spent close to $1.5 million to get the public involved, $468 thousand dollars of it spent with Rasor Marketing.

"Our role with the Eastern Corridor Project is to educate the public and to engage them into giving input into the project partners," said Mimi Rasor, President of Rasor Marketing.

Hamilton County Engineer Ted Hubbard says all segments of the Eastern Corridor Project are important, but if studies come back with no reasonable solutions to build parts of the project, a no build option is still out there.

"It's extremely disappointing to make decisions base on innuendo and rumor, make decisions based on fact," said Hubbard. "At least if we decide based on the facts we don't want to proceed, you can live with that."

There is a public meeting for the Red Bank Corridor segment of the project on Oct. 1 from 6 p.m. To 8 p.m. At the Madisonville Recreation Center.

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