Notice anything different on your I-670 and/or I-270 commute this week? Could be the nine 600-square-foot, 110,000-pound digital signs towering over the freeway.
When operational this fall, these signs will display information about the first ever Ohio SmartLane.
The I-670 “SmartLane” is the left shoulder that will be opened when traffic slows to a crawl. It will begin just east of I-71 in downtown Columbus and extend to I-270 on the East Side.
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The SmartLane will be closed most of the time, indicated by a red X. But when traffic dips below 50 mph, The Dispatch reports traffic monitors will send signals to the overhead signs to open the SmartLane.
A green arrow will appear along with a speed limit for SmartLane drivers to abide by (slower speeds keep traffic moving during congestion). A yellow indicator will appear when the lane is about to close.
ODOT will be installing more than 30 traffic cameras to monitor the lane for any obstructions, reports The Dispatch. The right shoulder of I-670 will be free for disabled vehicles to use.
The $61 million project is expected to be open in October. Visit ODOT.com for more information on the project and the new traffic patterns.