Partnership Shows Results - McCord Road Grade Separation
A project to separate the Norfolk Southern train line from McCord Road in Springfield Township had been floating around since 1988. It was identified as a priority that year in a TMACOG rail corridor study. Several years later, the project was specifically identified as a priority project in TMACOG’s 2025 Long Range Transportation Plan. The effort took on new momentum in 2009 following a fatality and serious injury when two Springfield High School students tried to beat a train. At that time about 84 trains a day crossed the road just north of the school.
TMACOG, the Lucas County Engineer’s office, Springfield High School, Springfield Township, and the Village of Holland kept continual pressure toward a solution to the problem. During the recession of the time, funding was difficult and there were many other regional priorities. During engineering and construction, unforeseen obstacles bumped the budget up significantly.
Eventually, more than $15 million was committed to the project through TMACOG-managed funds. In November 2016, after more than two years of construction, the ribbon was cut opening an underpass that allows trains to run above at more than 70 mph while providing safe, separated transportation for vehicles and pedestrians below. The entire project also includes a 2-lane roundabout at Hull Road and North Mall Drive with pedestrian access and push-button activated rapid flashing beacons that alert motorists to the presence of pedestrians.
At the ribbon-cutting, Lucas County Engineer Keith Earley described the job as a career-long effort.
Springfield HS Superintendent Dr. Michael O’Shea; TMACOG Planner Lance Dasher, Lucas County Engineer Keith Earley, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, and Director of ODOT District 2 Todd Audet prepare to open the underpass.
The new underpass has a sidewalk separated from the roadway by a
low concrete wall.