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Union Centre interchange celebrates 20th anniversary

Post Date:11/22/2017 1:59 PM

Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017, marks the 20th anniversary of the opening of the Union Centre Boulevard interchange.

Groundbreaking on the I-75 project was in October 1996 and opening ceremonies were celebrated on Nov. 25, 1997. When it opened to traffic that December, the interchange was the first new project of its kind built in Southwest Ohio in more than two decades.

Visionary developers worked closely with elected officials at the Township, County and State level to make the $29 million project a reality. Today, the Union Centre Boulevard Interchange serves as a catalyst for growth along the I-75 corridor.

Over the last 20 years, the Township has realized more than $3.54 billion in new investment, more than 34 million square feet in new construction, and nearly 40,000 new jobs in the Union Centre Boulevard area alone. This corporate investment in the Township has supported public safety services, community amenities and infrastructure improvements.

“The Union Centre Boulevard interchange has defined West Chester’s economic development position for the past 20 years and will continue to play a critical role in West Chester’s future sustainability and marketability,” said Aaron Wiegand, West Chester’s Community Development Director. “There have been important advancements in medical and retail development at all of West Chester’s interchanges, but none has been as diverse as and more impactful to our local economy than the growth at Union Centre.”

West Chester’s prime location in the Cincinnati-Dayton Metroplex and its ease of access with three primary interstate exits along I-75 continues to make the community an ideal choice for corporate development.

An average of 50,000 vehicles per day use the Union Centre Boulevard interchange and West Chester continually looks toward future demands of the infrastructure.  The Board of Trustees has partnered with the Butler County Engineer’s Office to consider next steps for ensuring Union Centre Boulevard remains a valuable, high functioning asset to the community.

“The typical design life of any road project when we look out over the years is 20 years, and we’re starting to see the pressures on this interchange from the standpoint of capacity,” Butler County Engineer Greg Wilkens told Trustees in March 2017.

Therefore, as the Union Centre Boulevard interchange marks its 20th birthday, plans are under way for a facelift and refresh of the existing infrastructure.

The Butler County Engineer’s Office, with input from the Ohio Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration, recommend a diverging diamond traffic pattern with pedestrian walkway.

 “We’d like to begin construction, optimistically, in 2019,” Wilkens said, ideally after the BCEO’s Cincinnati Dayton Road widening project is complete.

Estimated cost of the interchange improvement project is $13 million which will be funded through TIF (revenue collected specifically from the businesses in the immediate area of the interchange).

Watch the BCEO presentation at the March 28, 2017 meeting of the Board of Trustees (starts at 19:03):

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