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MDOT to Shut Down I-96 for Construction in 2014

A public survey and comment session led officials to the decision that complete shut-down is preferable to lane closures.

After months of outreach––the Michigan Department of Transportation on Monday announced that the reconstruction of I-96 in the communities of Livonia and Redford Township will be done under a complete freeway closure.

While details are still being finalized, the 7-mile stretch of the freeway between Newburgh and Telegraph roads is scheduled to close in early 2014.

"We put several options on the table for the public to consider," said MDOT Metro Region Engineer Tony Kratofil. "At the end of the day, the results favored the full closure and that's how we will proceed."

This estimated $150 million project includes:

  • Full reconstruction on 7 miles of pavement,
  • Extensive repairs to 36 overpasses within the project limits, and
  • Replacement of freeway drainage and lighting.

On March 1, MDOT hosted a public meeting and presented various options, including the preference on whether to close the freeway or keep lanes open through the work zone. Details on how each option would affect the project timeline were included.

In addition, the website www.96fix.com was launched, featuring project details and an online survey allowing motorists, business owners and residents to weigh in on their preferred option.

"We had tremendous response to our outreach," Kratofil said. "More than 1,700 responses later, 56 percent of the participants preferred the full closure in order to restore all lanes of travel within one year."

Originally opened in 1971, this section of I-96 has reached the point that a full-scale rebuild is necessary. MDOT will host another public meeting this fall to present project updates and seek input for aesthetic options.

Follow project developments at www.facebook.com/96fix and www.twitter.com/96fix.

Email the project team at MDOT-96fix@michigan.gov.

For local gas prices and traffic check out Trenton Patch's online updates in the Commute tab.

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