Skip to comments.Work has yet to start on eastbound I-696
Posted on 08/17/2018 1:58:22 PM PDT by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
By this point in the Interstate 696 rebuild project, state transportation officials had envisioned drivers headed eastbound would have been shifted to new concrete paved on the westbound side.
That hasn't happened -- yet.
A spokeswoman for the Michigan Department of Transportation said Thursday the changeover likely will take place the week of August 20.
"Early plans did expect the traffic shift to be in late July, but it's up to the contractor to organize his work crew and locations," Diane Cross of MDOT's communications staff said in an email. "As long as he meets the contract reopening date in November, he's allowed to organize the job however he needs to."
This past spring, MDOT shut down the entire westbound portion of I-696 from Interstate 94 to Interstate 75 to begin work on the $110 million project. At that time, officials said work on the eastbound lanes would begin in mid- or late-July, with motorists shifting over the newly-paved lanes of the westbound side so construction crews could dig up and replace the eastbound lanes.
But Cross said the contract allows Colorado-based Interstate Highway Construction to call the timing shots, as long as the work is done by early November.
Once a closing date for the eastbound side is finalized, MDOT will notify the media and the public, she said.
When work on eastbound I-696 does begin, a barrier wall between east and west traffic will be removed and eastbound traffic will be detoured onto the new lanes that have been paved on the westbound side, according to MDOT.
Motorists headed east will need to enter the freeway in Oakland County as entrance ramps at Mound Road and Groesbeck Highway will be closed.
Cross said there have not been any major problems with the work, except an issue in June involving faulty concrete. The construction company was forced to dig up about a half-mile of new concrete between I-94 and Gratiot Avenue in Roseville after MDOT officials determined it failed to meet quality standards.
MDOT officials at the time said they didn't think the mishap would impact the six-month construction timeline.
MDOT wants to get the I-696 project done this construction season in advance of a planned $1-billion, 10-year modernization project on I-75 in Oakland County.
The project is now a little more than 30 percent complete, according to the movingmacomb.org website.
About 150,000 motorists travel daily on I-696 through Macomb and Oakland counties.
Snyder fixing the damn roads, thank you very much Gretchen.
I-696, aka the Detroit autobahn. Go less than 85 and you will get passed with extreme prejudice.
Instead of a billion or so on I-75, I would rather see Mound road upgraded to a freeway connected to the Van Dyke freeway, along with the Davidson finished. Imigane 1-96 connected all the way to Utica and beyond. This would take a load off of I-75 and I-696.
Would that be the same as finishing I-275 to where it was originally meant to reconnect to I-75 somewhere north of Pontiac, or is this a different route?
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