A federally-funded project to improve pedestrian access near the Dayton Mall is being seen as a link to sections across Interstate 75 and a step toward making upgrades outlined in the mall area master plan.
Miami Twp. is in line to receive $1,059,390 of a $1.7 million project to provide better and safer pathways along Ohio 741 and Lyons Road, which overpasses I-75 north of the state route.
“That Lyons Road area has always been a high foot traffic area and this helps bridge that gap from over on the other side of the interstate to the communities over there – especially the apartment complexes” on Lyons, township Trustee President Doug Barry said.
“It helps bring that access point up to where….the Dayton Mall master plan can take over from there,” he added.
The Lyons/Ohio 741 work, aided by air quality improvement money through the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission, would “create a physical connection” to Byers Road and other areas west of the interstate, officials said.
Federal funding for the project is not set to be available until July 2019, but the township is taking strides for the work to be ready earlier should others drop off the priority list.
Documents show the township’s share of its cost would be $659,309, about $255,000 of which would come from revenue from the Dayton Mall Tax Increment Financing district.
The Lyons/Ohio 741 project is among the proposals local officials hope to move forward on around the mall area, which is being rebranded as Miami Crossing by the Miami Twp.-Dayton Mall Joint Economic Development District.
“….There are several other engineering studies that we would like to pursue as part of our long-term plans for the Miami Crossing District and further expand pedestrian access along the SR 741 corridor,” according to a memo from township Community Development Director Chris Snyder to trustees.
“We are currently planning to pursue several of the engineering studies through the Dayton Mall JEDD,” the memo states.
Those projects, Snyder said, include:
• Kingsridge/Lyons Ridge drives and the west side of Ohio 741;
• Ohio 725 between Byers Road and Ohio 741;
• Prestige Plaza Drive area;
Last week Miami Twp. trustees approved measures allowing the administration to make an agreement with transportation officials for preliminary work involving the Lyons/Ohio 741. The Montgomery County Transportation Improvement District is expected to manage the project.
Until engineering and design studies are complete, it is difficult to say specifically what that project will include, Snyder said. But it blends well with the mall area master plan, he said.
“I think it meshes very well in terms of pedestrian connections. We are providing improvements. It would create a specific connection from Byers Road to state route 741 – including some improvements at the (Lyons) intersection there.
He noted later, “I think from everything we were hearing about greater walkability in the Dayton Mall area recommendations and plans this will definitely fit with those.”
Being able to tap in to federal funding for the Lyons/Ohio 741 makes the project possible, officials said.
“We’re trying to find other ways to try and get revenue coming to the township to help supplement what we’re doing,” Barry said. “So we can give them the services that they need.”