One-way, one-lane eastbound traffic on Summit Street to begin March 7

East Summit Street, which has been identified as a high-traffic, high-accident area and a dangerous corridor for pedestrians, is in the midst of a major overhaul. Work on the “Summit Street: Building a Better Way” improvement project began last fall. The project is designed to transform a one-mile stretch of the road, from Lincoln Street to Loop Road that runs through the heart of Kent State University’s Kent Campus.

The enhancements include the addition of two roundabouts, a boulevard, bike lanes, and more sidewalks and crosswalks. The project, financed primarily through federal and state funds, will significantly reduce traffic congestion and create a safer and more attractive roadway.

The city of Kent is overseeing the project, which is expected to be completed in late 2017. Kent State will be working closely with the city during the next 21 months to minimize traffic disruptions. Many of you may have already experienced delays when traveling on Summit Street, and unfortunately those delays are going to continue for quite a while. 

Construction is underway on the first phase of the project, which runs from Fraternity Circle to just past Loop Road. One-way, one-lane eastbound traffic is scheduled to begin March 7 and continue through November. Access to buildings and parking lots in the construction area will be maintained at all times. The new traffic patterns also will result in a change for several of the PARTA bus routes, effective Feb. 29.

A website has been launched at to provide timely information about the project, including bus routes, parking and other relevant information. There also are videos showing detours and the transformation of Summit Street at the project completion.

As is typical with road projects of this magnitude, those who travel Summit Street — by car, bike or on foot — will experience inconveniences. A committee of city, university and PARTA representatives has been working to minimize the disruptions, but you should expect delays and allow more time to reach your destination. 

We realize this inconvenience will be frustrating at times, but we ask for your patience as we work to create a safer roadway for all of us.

Questions about the project should be sent to


Mark Polatajko                                                                                                 Dave Ruller

Sr. Vice President                                                                                            Kent City Manager
Finance and Administration

POSTED: Tuesday, June 21, 2016 02:26 PM
Updated: Saturday, December 3, 2022 01:02 AM