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What Will The New I-96 Freeway Look Like?

The Michigan Department of Transportation will shut down seven miles of the freeway in 2014 for a major reconstruction.

The Michigan Department of Transportation on Monday released results of a public survey concerning the design, landscaping, and aesthetics of the reconstruction of the I-96 freeway.

The $150 million project will shut down the freeway between Telegraph Road and Newburgh Road in 2014. MDOT held public meetings and conducted a survey in 2012 asking drivers to vote on whether to shut down the entire freeway—making for a shorter project, but with a larger construction impact—or to do the construction in phases.

Residents voted for the former option. Construction on the 7-mile stretch—including replacement of pavement, freeway drainage, and lighting, as well as repairs to 36 overpasses—will begin in early 2014.

The latest survey on the design of the project was administered online and at a public meeting in Redford in November 2012.

The I-96 reconstruction survey received 188 responses from members of the local community who made decisions on their preferences for barrier design, bridge fence design, color, corridor landscaping, planting, and service drive fencing and paving. MDOT may have to adjust the landscape items in some areas to fit site conditions, such as steep slopes and soil types.

Responses were quite clear on some matters. For example:

  • 88 percent of respondents favored vertical picket fencing over standard chain-link fencing.
  • 61 percent of respondents favored sustainable landscaping along the freeway over a mowed parkway.

According to Rob Morosi with the MDOT Office of Communications, the public suggestions are not concrete, and will be subject to fitting in with the project plan.

"Not all of the results can be implemented as is," Morosi explained. "We do reserve the right to have engineering supersede the vote in certain circumstances."

The results of the survey, as well as more information on the project, can be found at www.96fix.com. Those interested can also follow project developments at www.facebook.com/96fix  and www.twitter.com/96fix.

Denise Nash January 29, 2013 at 03:59 PM
This closure will be terrible for commuters. :-((
Tom Charters January 30, 2013 at 02:42 AM
Hopefully the results will offset any inconvenience. One thing I liked living in Texas was they did their road work from 9pm to 5am. A few lane changes but no stops and equipment in the roadway. Michigan should adopt this schedule.
Kathy January 30, 2013 at 04:12 PM
iF THE RECONSTRUCTION WAS DONE CORRECTLY IN 2001 THEN THIS CONVERSATION WOULD BE NON EXISTENT. MI needs to hold these road construction companies accountable for their shoddy job... not re-bill the tax payers. JAIL these criminals & let US vote/ hire reputable companies that WILL be held accountable if it fails too soon. JEFFERIES lasted from 1977(ish) until 2000. Look at the I 96 (E) rebuild 2001 - needed work within a year.& practically monthly maintenance since inception. WHY can't MI politicians figure this out yet? M-14 ...96 East/ West... I - 275... list goes on.
Lawrence Sokolowski January 30, 2013 at 05:07 PM
I'm with you all the way!!! Start a petition and I'll sign it. Tired of road construction
Peter Szerszen August 16, 2013 at 01:44 AM
I remember when this was resurfaced in 2001. It did not need it at all. The resulting work destroyed the road. Any of the bumps and potholes you see now are in the leveling and wearing course of the asphalt, not the concrete. That concrete was in exceptional condition for 25 years old. On par with 696 today. I would bet it would still be in service if it wasn't for the "recapping" philosophy MDOT had back then.

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