BRUNSWICK, Ohio (WJW) — The cities of Strongsville and Brunswick are at odds over a new law that will build an interchange along Interstate 71 between both cities.
The issue is the source of debate and is expected to again be addressed during a Brunswick City Council meeting Monday. Homeowners have previously expressed concern about how new construction could lead to the loss of their homes through eminent domain.
“People are heated,” said Nick Hanek, president of Brunswick City Council. “This is their livelihood. This is their life.”
Hanek said he will resist a plan to create a new interchange that will likely be constructed in a residential community along Boston Road.
“The people of Strongsville and Brunswick — not just a couple — will certainly lose their homes,” said Hanek. “They are turning people’s home to rubble for little to no reason.”
The change is the result of the transportation budget signed into law earlier this month. It was co-sponsored by state Rep. Thomas Patton, a Republican representing Strongsville. Patton said the new interchange will alleviate traffic backups along state Route 82 and the change would benefit people who call both cities home.
A timeline as to when the interchange would be created is not clear. A request for comment from the mayor of Strongsville was not returned.
“We moved here from California about five years ago and we picked this neighborhood because it was very quiet,” said Susan Reveld who lives near Boston Road. “In California, when they had these exits that went into suburban neighborhoods, the crime increased incredibly.”
Despite the law, Brunswick officials and some residents said they won’t give up without a fight.
“We have to keep making the case and eventually hope the logical thing will play out, and that is: People are more valuable than turning Brunswick into a rest stop,” said Hanek.