July 23, 2016

Mostly clear

State plans to widen I-71 between Cleveland, Columbus

COLUMBUS — The state plans to start work on widening a section of Interstate 71 that can slow the drive between Cleveland and Columbus.

The highway in each direction narrows from three lanes to two for 27 miles in counties north of Columbus. The addition of extra lanes has been approved by an Ohio Department of Transportation panel that sets priorities for road projects.

The work will be done in three stages, with construction expected to begin next summer. The Columbus Dispatch reports the first phase got a green light Thursday and is estimated to cost $46.9 million, to be paid for through gas taxes and federal grants.