Portsmouth’s Bypass Basics

The Southern Ohio Veterans Memorial Highway, a concept first discussed 51 years ago, will bypass Portsmouth in Scioto County.

According to the Ohio Department of Transportation, the highway is the largest project in ODOT history and also the first project to use the concept of public-private partnership, a contract between ODOT and the Portsmouth Gateway Group. The highway will provide both easier access to the surrounding area for residents and trucks that are traveling to larger cities.

About the highway:

  • Avoids 30 traffic signals
  • Bypasses 26 miles of U.S. Highway 52 and U.S. Highway 23 through Portsmouth
  • $429 million
  • 16 miles long
  • Saves an average of 16 minutes of time
  • Scheduled project completion: 2019
  • 13,000-14,000 cars a day using the bypass
  • 7,000 of those cars will be local residents
  • 3,500-5,000 of the vehicles will be truck traffic
  • That leaves 1,200-2,000 vehicles a day actually bypassing Portsmouth
  • And a total of 20,000 vehicles using the bypass

by Ali Shultz


Southeast Ohio strives to spotlight the culture and community within our 21-county region and aims to inform, entertain and inspire readers with stories that hit close to home. Southeast Ohio is the first student-produced regional magazine in the country. Every semester, approximately 25 students enrolled in Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism produce an issue of the magazine, which is published in print twice a year. The staff generates story ideas, conducts interviews, writes stories and designs the magazine in only 15 weeks. The magazine has won several Regional Mark of Excellence Awards from the Society of Professional Journalists.