CASTINE — Castine residents can expect a “whole new look” once the road improvements are completed in town, as well as expect the Darke County Sheriff’s Office to enforce compliance with the road closure to out-of-town travelers and trucks.
Jerry McClannan, Mote and Associates project manager, said the street will still have two lanes with space for people to park on the streets. The end result will be a whole new look with new sidewalks, storm drainage, curbs and gutters for the for better storm drainage for property owners on Main Street. Castine residents have water wells and septic tanks, so the project is expected to improve water drainage by hooking up to existing storm water lines to the creek outside the village.
“In the past what has happened is the street was paved over the years and the center of the street crowned and had led to flooding of sidewalks and was an issue,” McClannan said.
Several trees were removed because they obstructed traveling views and roots pushed up the sidewalks.
The Ohio Department of Transportation is expected to follow up after Castine’s drainage improvements by resurfacing the street through town to State Route 36 up toward Greenville. That is expected to happen in mid-September.
In addition, Vectren will replace the natural gas main, and Dayton Power and light will replace power poles, he said.
The $550,000 cost is expected to be paid from some grant money the village received from the Ohio Public Works Commission.
“I know the village is excited to make the improvements because they haven’t had an construction project in recent years,” McClannan said.
Recent developments now require the Darke County Sheriff’s Office to enforce street closures from one end of Castine to the other on Main Street, which is U.S. Route 127. Castine is located at the southern end of Darke County near the Preble County line.
Main Street is expected to be closed for the next three months.
One resident, Annetta Clark, said that she lives outside the village limits of Castine.
“As a resident that lives just outside the village limits of Castine, I am happy that the residents are getting new sidewalks, curbs and mail boxes,” Clark said. “But, I’m sure if you were to ask the truck drivers that are being re-routed down State Route 503 to Lewisburg to get onto U.S. Route 40 and then back to U.S. Route 127, they would say it is an inconvenience to them.”
Yet according to DCSO, trucks have nearly tipped over and tie up the project, so it will enforce the law to travel on the closed roads. DCSO also said it received complaints about the unauthorized travelers through the construction zone from safety problems for construction workers to delays in the road construction.
“The only vehicles permitted to travel are those that live in the village or have legitimate business there; all other through traffic is prohibited,” the DCSO stated in a press release.
The designated detour is at State Route 503 to the north and U.S. Route 40 to the south. The detour for truck traffic is U.S. Route 40 east of U.S. Route 127 and State Route 503. Truck traffic cannot travel on county and township roads north and south of Castine because they can not accommodate large semis and commercial trucks at the rural intersections, according to DCSO.