Road extension, traffic light near Dayton Mall a go as concerns remain

A final development plan to extend Vienna Parkway about 650 feet to Ohio 741 is set to be considered by the Miami Twp. Zoning Commission Tuesday night. NICK BLIZZARD/STAFF

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A final development plan to extend Vienna Parkway about 650 feet to Ohio 741 is set to be considered by the Miami Twp. Zoning Commission Tuesday night. NICK BLIZZARD/STAFF

The extension of a road in an upscale neighborhood near the Dayton Mall will go forward to Ohio 741, as will more traffic studies on the project’s impact.

Miami Twp. trustees approved the 650-foot completion on Vienna Parkway to the state route - which will include a traffic light at the future intersection - over the concerns of neighborhood residents who said it would invite more “cut through” traffic and safety hazards.

“I emphatically stand against it,” Vienna Park resident Nathan Bradley told trustees. “It’s not right for the neighborhood. It’s not right for the overall community. There is a lot of information that is yet to be decided in terms of traffic.”

Board of trustees Vice President John Morris, who said the extension and traffic light would increase safety for the township, voted in favor of the $2 million plan after calling for more traffic monitoring on the parkway.

“Safety is my No. 1 priority,” Morris told a room full of Vienna Park residents, noting the road’s completion will improve fire and police access to the neighborhood.

“And the installation of a traffic signal not only improves the safety of all of those intending to go south on 741 and people coming in and out of” Bauer elementary and Bishop Leibold schools, “but it improves the safety and the opportunity for us to service the needs of everyone in that community,” he added.

Vienna Parkway starts at Mad River Road, just north of the Dayton Mall. It is the main artery in a stylish, brick home neighborhood that Bradley called “relatively quiet” with “relatively low traffic,” having been shielded from Ohio 741’s direct impact for decades.

The proposed road is 44 foot wide — some 15 feet more than nearby streets — and has been on the Montgomery County Thoroughfare Plan since the 1970s, officials said.

The parkway’s completion has been discussed in recent years as new housing plans have been proposed and – ultimately – rejected by trustees. The township pushed for the road project after acquiring about 13 acres along Ohio 741 from Zengel Construction, which built all of the Vienna Park homes and has an office at the road’s dead end.

The area involving township land is called Vienna Center and includes plans for a two-story, 119-bed senior living facility to be built by Louisville Ky.-based Trilogy Health Services.

The road extension is projected to cost about $2 million. The township plans to finance the project with a low-interest State Infrastructure Bank loan using Joint Economic Development District Funds, official have said.

The township’s zoning commission recommended approval of the extension with four stipulations. A key one to of those was that the completion of the road would coincide with traffic improvements on the current road.

The resolution approved by Morris and Trustee Don Culp — board President Doug Barry was absent — changed that. It calls for more traffic monitoring “within six months — if not within 30 days — of the completion of Vienna Parkway.”

The township is considering various traffic calming options, including mini-roundabouts and stop signs. But some longtime area residents — like Robert Kos — are concerned about traffic the senior facility would generate and they remain against the extension.

“Even with all the traffic generated from the health services facility, it will likely generate less traffic than will result from commuters and shoppers and people looking for a quick way to avoid the mall area,” Kos said.

“It will be forever be a fast, short-cut route,” he added. “I think the traffic increase on Vienna Parkway is underestimated.”

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