Scioto County Engineer, Craig J. Opperman, P.E., P.S., has launched a roadside safety improvement program for 2011. Opperman said this marks the third year of the program which addresses such items as roadside hazard removals, shoulder widening and installation of guardrail on the selected routes. "We're trying to address some of our higher traffic and high volume areas with this program," Opperman said. Opperman explained that he wrote a grant to the Federal Highway Administration, for installation of guardrail on the county highway system. The county was awarded the grant for the 2016 construction season. "We made a request to move up funding availability to Spring 2011. In order to make this possible, a revision had to be made to the State Transportation Improvement Program and the plans had to be completed by March. While the revision to the program was being completed, we prepared a set of plans to keep progress moving on the project," Opperman said. The funds were made available for the installation of the guardrails in the spring of 2011. The roads selected for this years program are, Carey's Run-Pond Creek Road, Dry Run-Pond Creek Road, Nauvoo-Pond Creek Road, Galena Pike, Shepherd's Fork Road and Slab Run Road in West Portsmouth. "These roads were selected based upon traffic volumes, proximity to the other roads in need, and their own corresponding need for guardrail. All guardrail locations were evaluated for need during the plan preparation process given the funding constraints of the grant," Opperman said. Opperman said the county needs some 80 miles of guardrails installed. "We are installing 4.3 miles of guardrail with this program this year and it cost us over $300,000. When you put the numbers together, were trying to get the grant money to try to keep this thing moving and trying to make these improvements," Opperman said. Lake Erie Construction Company was awarded a contract for $331,620. The estimated date of completion is July 30. The contractor is working toward an early project completion which is anticipated to be in approximately four weeks.