The East Dry Ridge Connector is a two-lane rural collector that removes traffic from local roads in downtown Dry Ridge, KY. The road was built to attract new industrial development to a large industrial park east of the city, and to eliminate truck traffic in downtown Dry Ridge.
Project Type:Connector Project Mode:Highway Average Annual Daily Traffic:5,800 Length (mi):2.20
Economic Distress:1.20 Population Density (ppl/sq mi):95 Population Growth Rate (%):1.41
Employment Growth Rate (%):0.48 Market Size:174,145 Airport Travel Distance:28 Topography:14
Region:Southeast State:KY County:County
City:Dry Ridge Urban/Class Level:Rural Local Area:N/A
Impact Area:County Transportation System:N/A GIS Lat/Long:38.682908 / -84.579877
Initial Study Date:N/A Post Constr. Study Date:2008
Constr. Start Date:2002 Constr. End Date:2005
Project Year of Expenditure (YOE): N/A Planned Cost (YOE $):N/A
Actual Cost (YOE $):11,266,000 Actual Cost (curr $):13,483,066
NOTE: All pre/post dollar values are in 2013$
Select a region to display the conditions for that region:
NOTE: All impact dollar values are in 2013$
|Income (in $M's)||8.49||4.95||13.44|
|Output (in $M's)||N/A||N/A||N/A|
The $11.27 million ($2002), 2.2 mile East Dry Ridge Connector is a two-lane rural collector that removes traffic from local roads in downtown Dry Ridge, KY. The road replaces a section of US 25 and KY 22, beginning at KY 22 (Skeeter Davis Highway) on the east side of Dry Ridge, and running clockwise to the southeast corner of the city where it reconnects with US 25. The road was built with the hopes of attracting new industrial development to a large industrial park east of the city, and to eliminate truck traffic in downtown Dry Ridge. To date, approximately 260 direct jobs have been created, with investment of around $3.5 million, including industrial, commercial and residential development.
2.1 Location & Transportation Connections
The East Dry Ridge Connector replaces US 25 and KY 22 for a 2.2 mile stretch to the east of downtown Dry Ridge, KY, Grant County in northern Kentucky. The road intersects with Interstate 75, which connects to Interstate 71, providing access to Cincinnati and Columbus, OH. Cincinnati is 42 miles north of Dry Ridge. Interstate 64, located 48 miles to the south in Lexington via I-75, provides east-west access. Dry Ridge is 28 miles south of the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. The nearest river port is in Cincinnati. No railroad service is available in Grant County.
2.2 Community Character & Project Context
In 2008, the population of Dry Ridge was 2,228, an increase of 4% since 2000. Over the same period, employment in Dry Ridge increased from 2,363 to 2,829 (19.3%.) In comparison, Grant County's population increased from 23,112 to 25,548 (10.5%), and employment from 108,526 to 132,104 (21%) between 2001 and 2008, while the state of Kentucky experienced a population increase of 5% and an employment increase of 10% over the same period.
Dry Ridge is a rural community. Both the city and the county have transformed from an agricultural base to a service and retail base. However, the largest employers in Dry Ridge are manufacturers. The Dana Corporation, a firm that assembles light truck axles, located in Dry Ridge in 1998 and is the city's largest employer with 314 workers. Grant County Foods, a food processor and distributor and the second largest firm in the city, employs 138 people. No other firm in Dry Ridge employs more than 30 people.
Grant County has a total of 5,323 jobs, of which 23% are in services, 22.5% in trade, transportation and utilities, and 13.2% in manufacturing. Grant County is a commuting county, with many people traveling to jobs in Cincinnati. Employment in the county increased by 2.9 percent between 2001 and 2008, while employment in the state increased by 7 percent. The county's faster population growth and slower employment growth compared to the state reflects its continued emergence as a bedroom county for the Cincinnati metropolitan area.
The 2.2 mile East Dry Ridge Connector is a new section of US 25 that begins at KY 22 in the north and connects to the existing US 25 in the south. The road was built in two phases, with construction beginning in 2002 and ending in 2005, for a total cost of $11.27 million ($2002.) The project included creating new roadway and approaches to US 25, a bridge crossing over US 25 and railroad tracks, a new entrance to the Dana Corporation, the realignment of nearby roads, and another railroad crossing. The Connector now carries the US 25 and KY 22 banner, while the old KY 22 and US 25 passing through downtown Dry Ridge have been designated as Business 22 and 25.
The road was built to improve safety by eliminating railroad crossings, and to ease congestion and truck traffic in downtown Dry Ridge. The road was also touted as a catalyst for economic development because it provides direct access to sites identified for industrial development. At the ribbon cutting for the connector, State Representative Royce Adams stated that ?the new road will provide new opportunities for economic development to the area. It will provide a better access to available sites for industry ??
4.1 Transportation Impacts
In 2010, average annual daily trips on the East Dry Ridge Connector totaled 5,800. The connector has reduced traffic in the downtown, and improved safety by removing trucks from the narrow village center streets.
4.2 Demographic, Economic & Land Use Impacts
The Dry Ridge Connector runs through the middle of the 180-acre, privately owned Grant County Industrial Park. In 1998, prior to the construction of the connector, Dana Corporation opened a light truck axle assembly plant in the park. After completion of the bypass, Dana Corporation expanded business at the facility, moving operations from two Virginia plants to the Dry Ridge location, investing approximately $2.5 million, and adding 240 jobs. The decision to consolidate operations in Dry Ridge is directly credited to the improved access provided by the connector. A large self-storage facility with a U-Haul truck rental office has also opened at the industrial park since the connector opened, employing approximately 5 people.
The Grant County Industrial Park is considered the most desirable land in the county for future industrial development because it is flat and soils are buildable. The County has shown the property to several interested parties, but the current national economic downturn has limited investment in the region. Prior to the downturn, Dry Ridge was growing fast, and county economic officials expect that the industrial park will expand rapidly when the economy begins to grow.
There has been some commercial development at the termini of the connector road, including a bank, a local newspaper office, and a dentist's office. These businesses employ an estimated 15 people. Five new high-end single family homes have also been built near the connector. There has been no economic impact on the downtown.
In total, approximately 260 jobs have been created in Dry Ridge as a result of the roadway investment. This number is expected to increase as the economy begins to grow again. An estimated $3 million to $3.5 million have been invested in the corridor.
No new regulatory policies have been adopted to encourage development along the Dry Ridge Connector. The Grant County Chamber of Commerce and the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development have expanded efforts to market the Grant County Industrial Park since the connector was built. The current economic downturn has limited the ability of the connector to attract development to the industrial park.
OrganizationDry Ridge Mayor's Office Grant County Chamber of Commerce Kentucky Office of Employment and Training, Division of Research and Statistics Kentucky Transportation Cabinet