New SR18 bypass now open in North Baltimore

NORTH BALTIMORE, OH (Toledo News Now) - North Baltimore residents and business owners gathered Monday for a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new State Route 18 bypass. The bypass makes it easier and faster for trucks to pass through the area.

The project was under construction for about a year, and downtown business owners say they are happy to see it completed.

"When they very first shut the road down it really hurt us on Main Street because we had so many people that bypassed this area so they didn't have to go around the construction...but now that its open and people are coming through again, business is starting to pick up," said Steve Shinsky, who owns the Crossroads Café.

Ohio Governor John Kasich was on hand to take part in the ceremony, and says he hopes the bypass will lead to job growth in the area and throughout the state.

"What it's going to do is lead to more jobs, I mean that's what this is all about," said Kasich. "This gives companies easier access to getting everything processed rather than have to go to Chicago. So, North Baltimore is going to become the new Chicago, I hope."

Shinsky is hoping Kasich is right.

"I'm hoping the business picks up with the expansion and everybody moving into the area...I know a lot of little businesses have popped up here on Main Street, we're hoping, the whole area grows," he said.

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