FRANKLIN COUNTY – Construction started recently in Central Ohio that will bring the region one step closer to self-driving vehicles. Thirty-five miles of high-capacity fiber optic cable will be installed underground alongside US 33 between Dublin and East Liberty in Logan, Union, and Franklin Counties.
The construction should have little impact on the 50,000 vehicles that use US 33 daily. That’s because the cable installation is alongside the road.
This section of US 33 is called the “Smart Mobility Corridor,” because the fiber optic cable will ultimately link automobile researchers with data from roadside sensors to be constructed in a future phase of construction. These connections will give automobile researchers the ability to collect data as they safely test smart transportation technologies including autonomous and connected vehicles in all weather conditions.
The underground installation, which is expected to be completed this year, is split up into four parts.
Part 1: Install fiber on US 33 from SR 347 to SR 245 Begins: June 5, 2017 Complete: July 14, 2017
Part 2: Construct Telecommunications Building at US 33/SR 347 in E. Liberty Begins: June 19, 2017 Complete: August 1, 2017
Part 3: Install fiber along US 33 from SR 245 to Watkins/Scottslawn Road Begins June 21, 2017 Complete: August 1, 2017
Part 4: Install fiber along US 33 from Watkins/Scottslawn Road to SR 161/Post Road then along Post/Perimeter Drive in Dublin near the intersection of Perimeter Drive to Hospital Drive and from there utilize existing conduit to the Metro Data Center located just inside I-270 near the I-270 & US-33 interchange. Begins: July 12, 2017 Complete: August 11, 2017
Weather permitting, a minimum of 24 strands of fiber is expected to be tested and operational by mid-August to facilitate high speed communications along the corridor. The remaining strands of fiber (432 total) along with all other project work scheduled to be complete by October 2017.
In addition to miles of fiber optic cable, the $4.8 million dollar project also includes 250 pull boxes’ that will adequately house the cable throughout the corridor.