Dixon Road bridge to close for repairs

Written on 05/21/2024
Patrick Munsey

Also, county allows use of all-terrain vehicles on roads

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Motorists on the west side of Kokomo should be aware that their commute will have to change for a bit in late June. The Howard County Board of Commissioners approved a concrete overlay on the Dixon Road bridge, just south of Markland Avenue.

The authorization took place on May 20, and according to Howard County Highway Superintendent Amber Tolle got, bids will be opened for the project on June 17. Construction will follow, and Tolle estimated the bridge will remain closed for approximately two weeks.

“This bridge is in really good shape except for the wearing surface,” said Tolle. “We've had lots of issues with the surface over the last two years. We've had to make some asphalt repairs for that, but this would fix the problem.”

Tolle also received permission to advertise for bids on a reconstruction project at County Road 1250 W, from State Road 22 to the north one mile. This project is funded in part by a state Community Crossings matching grant.

“This is a project that is going to reconstruct a portion of that road where we have the embankment that's failing,” said Tolle. “It's been failing for several years, and we've had to do repairs.”

Bids on that project also will be opened on June 17. Tolle didn’t give a timeframe for construction.

In other board of commissioners business, the county adopted a new ordinance allowing the use of all-terrain vehicles and utility off-road vehicles on public roads. All counties surrounding Howard County currently allow the practice, which has caused some difficulty for local farmers, according to Commissioner Brad Bray.

“You have farmers who live on county line that ride their UTV to spray their fields,” said Bray. “When they want to travel a half mile over to Howard County to spray their field here, they can't do it because they’ll get (ticketed).”

The ordinance will allow off-road vehicles that can travel over natural terrain, including multi-wheel drive, low-pressure tire vehicles, amphibious vehicles, and ground effect air cushioned vehicles (hovercrafts) to use county roads.

Farm vehicles, military vehicles, construction and mining vehicles, snowmobiles, aircraft, watercraft, golf carts, and electric bicycles are not covered by the ordinance. The vehicles must be operated by licensed motorists, and the vehicles must be registered with the state. To operate the vehicles at night, they must have working lights and signals.

Passengers will be limited to the number recommended by the manufacturer. All traffic laws must be observed by the operator, and the vehicle must be properly insured. Violations of the ordinance will result in a $250 fine. The ordinance excludes Greentown, Russiaville and Kokomo.