Thursday, April 22, 2010

M-39 Concepts

The Michigan Department of Transportation hosted a community meeting last night at Renaissance High School (6565 W. Outer Dr.) to discuss their plans to renovate the Southfield Freeway. They plan to renovate the Southfield Freeway from W. Eight Mile Rd. south towards Allen Park.

This project is currently scheduled to start construction in the spring of 2011.

There were several points that were discussed. One in particular was the question of whether M-DOT should maintain one lane of traffic in each direction or if they should close the freeway.

Several pros and cons of each option were discussed. The one point that seemed to decide the issue in the minds of residents who attended this meeting was the fact that, by closing the freeway instead of maintaining one lane of traffic, M-DOT would be able to complete their work in just one full construction season (likely March 2011 through November 2011). If, however, a lane of traffic was maintained then work on the freeway would almost certainly continue into 2012.

M-DOT asked each resident in attendance to vote on their preference between a freeway closure and maintaining one lane of traffic. Closing the Southfield Freeway was their clear choice by a 6 to 1 margin.

Focusing on the Warrendale neighborhood, it was also announced that the Sawyer street pedestrian bridge will be rebuilt.

It was also confirmed by M-DOT representatives that the current resurfacing of the Southfield Freeway in the Warrendale area will be completed in approximately one month.

Finally, representative from M-DOT shared different design option as to what the various pedestrian bridges and other features of the redeveloped Southfield Freeway should look like. Residents had an opportunity to share their thoughts on them.

M-DOT announced towards the end of this meeting that there will be at least one, possibly two, more meetings of this type before their design is finalized. The next meeting will be in May, although the exact day and location has not been confirmed.

As always, I will continue to update this story as it develops.

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