Beavercreek and Kettering are each paying 20% of the local share to expand that section of the road from three to five lanes. Federal funds are covering the remaining widening costs, Sliemers said.
The work which started in June has reduced traffic to one lane in each direction and alternative routes are suggested until its completion, scheduled in fall 2022, according to Kettering.
But both cities say the expansion will help bring jobs to the 1,250-acre research park, which straddles both jurisdictions.
The project will “create a valuable outcome for residents in both communities,” Beavercreek City Manager Pete Landrum said in an email.
It “will improve safety and congestion at Indian Ripple and County Line roads, and help with developing the remaining land” on that city’s side of the research park, he added.
The widening will allow easier access to Shakertown Road, the future site of GE Aviation-owned Unison Industries, Landrum said.
Earlier this year, Unison presented plans to build a new site housing about 400 jobs on 53 acres at the research park in a move to consolidate area facilities.
Kettering officials have said the road widening is a key element in attracting more jobs and businesses to MVRP land, more than 300 acres of which the city bought four years ago.
Since then, Community Tissue Services has moved in and Life Connection of Ohio is relocating its regional office from Dayton. Both employers either have or are expanding with projects expected to add about 200 jobs combined to the park’s southern edge, records show.
A project on the park’s north end got financial boost earlier this year from JobsOhio, whose president said the vacant building at 1900 Founders Drive “will be a premier site with a large space near Wright-Patterson, making it ideal for innovative companies that are looking to grow.”
The second phase of the County Line widening will start by early December, but will halt for much of the winter due to weather and resume in the spring, Sliemers said.
When the work shifts west, crews “will construct a shared use path” on that side and connect it to an existing bike route that will eventually link the Stroop Road path with one in Dayton, he said.