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ODOT Works To Add Parts of National Road to Maps

A consultant for the Ohio Department of Transportation is working to identify roads that are a part of the historic National Road but do not appear on the Transportation Information Mapping System.

Gabe Hays, consultant for the Ohio Department of Transportation Scenic Byway Program, said they are working on an audit of the Scenic Byway to ensure the official map’s program is accurate. He said he has been working the past year to identify the areas that may need added to the system. Through the audit, he has found around 45 roadways in the state that do not appear on the mapping system.

“There are several spots from Blaine clear out toward Springfield on Ohio’s portion of National Road that arent what I think they should be, so as a group we’re just going to go through those and make sure the lines on the map that some visitors may see in the future will be accurate,” he said.

Hays met with the Ohio National Road Association Tuesday to receive input on the areas and roads he has discovered that may need added to the mapping system.

Members of the board agreed with Hays’ suggestions. The suggestions will now be submitted to ODOT.

John Marshall, a board member of the ONRA, said updating the mapping will not only help tourists exploring the area but will also allow for additional funding opportunities for future projects.

In other matters, Barb Ballint, director of the Belmont County Tourism Council and board member of the ONRA, spoke about the rededication ceremony of mile marker No. 141 that was held earlier this month in front of the Belmont County Courthouse. She said it was a “fantastic turnout” with around 100 people in attendance.

Ballint said there was a small issue with the marker as it was engraved incorrectly. The directions on the marker, east to west, were engraved backwards, she said. However, the company took full responsibility for the mistake and are replacing the marker.

“It’s not correct right now but it will be fixed,” she said.

Following the meeting, Marshall urged meeting attendees to go on a self-guided tour of some of the area’s historic landmarks including the brick road in Morristown, the Great Western School, the Belmont County Heritage Museum, and Blaine Bridge in Pease Township.

Prior to this year, the board met only in Columbus; however, now they take turns holding meetings in various counties that National Road runs through. Marshall said this was the first meeting held in Belmont County. The board’s next meeting is set for Sept. 28 in Clark County.

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