The winter weather appears to have put the brakes on the county’s effort to improve the Odon-Cannelburg Road (CR 900E) but there is still plenty going on behind the scenes. County officials had hoped to get the pavement down on the section extending from 450N to 550N this fall, but that work is now on hold.
“The cold and snowy weather just put a stop to it for now,” said Daviess County Highway Superintendent Phil Cornelius. “We will have some work done this winter on some of the drainage structures but the paving won’t resume until spring.”
In the meantime, the part of the road under construction will be open to local traffic and county officials are moving mountains of paper toward getting the rest of the road re-built. “We put in an application with INDOT on Friday for federal funding to get the entire project finished,” said Cornelius.
The county had already secured funding to get the road expanded to CR 800N. Officials had been planning to do the rest in phases, but this fall were told the state was changing the way it funded projects and that there was a chance to get the entire funding for the $11.6 million project. “We will just have to wait to find out whether that is approved,” said Cornelius. “We should get word on that in January.”
Another focus on the road will be the next phase of construction between CR 550N and 800N. The county council has approved $805,000 to purchase land for the right of way. “Because of the area it is in the price for the land is a lot higher than other parts of the county,” said Cornelius. “We will be purchasing a total of 12.9 acres of land along about two and one-quarter miles of road. Because that land is in the Amish area it just sells for a lot more. We have appraisers that go over comparable land sales in the area. Land in that area probably sells for 35 to 40 percent more than it would in other parts of the county.”