Starke County Commissioners Approve Proposed Road Conversion Policy

Starke County Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler asked the commissioners Monday night to consider approving a proposed road conversion policy with an amendment.

Under the policy, requests can be submitted to convert a gravel road to a double chip sealed road. In order for that process to move forward, the highway department will consider several elements before approval.  A road conversion scoring system would include the cost of the request, traffic volumes, a description of the road, thoroughfare plan classification, connectivity, public support, available right-of-way and the willingness of residents to dedicate right-of-way, and the road’s proximity to state roads.

One amendment Ritzler mentioned was the omission of the residents paying for the conversion. 

Any requests would be submitted by June 1 for consideration of conversion in the following year, if approved. 

Ritzler recommended the approval of the policy.

“It basically gives a standardized way of choosing how to do these gravel roads instead of who complains the loudest,” commented Ritzler.  “We put together the information and whoever has the best application then I will make a recommendation and you guys would approve that.  We would do three roads a year.”

The commissioners unanimously approved the road conversion policy with a unanimous vote.