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Solon Officials Hope to Meet With ODOT About U.S. 422 Rails

The city will ask officials with the Ohio Department of Transportation to attend a meeting on Jan. 17 to discuss the new traffic barriers on U.S. 422.

Solon City Council members hope to meet with state transportation officials next month to discuss concerns with the new guard rails along U.S. 422.

Council members met Monday to put the final touches on a l expressing the city's concerns with the rails, which were built close to the road and have prompted safety concerned from residents and some city officials.

Along with the letter -- which will be mailed this week -- council members hope that ODOT officials will either attend the Jan. 16 council meeting at to answer questions about the guard rails or meet with Public Works Commissioner James Stanek and council representatives at another time to discuss the matter.

"These are the experts," Councilman Bill Mooney said. "Let's give them a chance to come in and talk about it."

When city officials originally requested the barriers to prevent cars from crossing the grassy median and causing head-on collisions, they envisioned a cable barrier built in the center of the median.

But that would have been too expensive because ODOT would have had alter drainage in the center of the median. So instead, ODOT built barriers just inside the left lane on both sides of the highway.

This has raised safety concerns because both residents and some city officials are concerned that, without room to pull off the road, more accidents and traffic slowdowns will happen.

A crash along U.S. 422 in November that has only increased speculation that the rails are dangerous. While that driver, Jason Kasmer, struck the rail, police officials say whether the rails contributed to the crash.

Resident Stan Gordon brought a model car and wood peice with him Monday to describe his concerns that more lives may be lost because of these barriers.

"I can appreciate that ODOT came to help us, but I’ll tell you this, we’ve got a serious problem out there," Gordon said.

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