Detroit will spend $60 million to fix nearly 80 miles of major roads and neighborhood streets this year, including a revamp of 3.5 miles of East Jefferson Avenue, officials said today.
Road crews kicked off the construction season and will work through November on dozens of stretches of local streets and major thoroughfares, said Ron Brundidge, the city’s Department of Public Works director. Brundidge said funding available this year is up $19 million from 2015, and the city will repair 25 more miles than it did last year.
“Obviously traffic is going to be impacted while the roadwork is going on,” Brundidge said at a news conference this morning along a stretch of West Chicago, west of Greenfield, where crews were removing deteriorated pavement and topping the road with new layers of asphalt.
“We just ask our residents to be patient while we’re working and give the crews ample room to do the work,” Brundidge said. “Streets will remain open while all construction is occurring. We’re not going to close off any streets, but it may result in a reduction of the lanes available.”
Major highlights include:
- Repairs on major thoroughfares including McNichols between John R and Woodward; Livernois between Vernor and Grand River; Hayes between 8 Mile and State Fair; State Fair between Gratiot and Kelly; East Warren between Cadillac and Connor, and West Grand Boulevard between Woodward and Linwood.
- A $6-million revamp of East Jefferson between East Grand Boulevard and Lakewood, with construction starting later this year and lasting into 2017. Included are new landscaped medians and protected bike paths.
- $2 million to repair the Rosa Parks bridge north of Lafayette, the bridge connecting Mt. Elliott and Mound roads and the Lafayette bridge west of Rosa Parks.
- $2.3 million for green infrastructure projects on four roads near the Rouge River that will help mitigate the effect of rainwater run-off into the city’s sewers, in conjunction with the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department. Porous asphalt pavers that allow rainwater to pass through and soak into the ground will be installed on Keeler between Outer Drive and Piedmont and on Artesian between Joy and Cathedral. Bioswales — landscaping that filters water — will be installed on Tireman from Parkland to Chatham, and a new storm drainage and storage system will be built on Constance between Beaverland and Parkland.
Detroit has nearly 2,500 miles of neighborhood and major roads in its jurisdiction, and Brundidge said the city tries to maintain a schedule of repairs every 20 years for neighborhood streets. Streets are selected for repairs based on factors including their level of deterioration, the amount of traffic they carry and whether repairs help stabilize neighborhoods.
Angy Webb, who lives near West Chicago and is president of the Joy Community Association, said she was happy to see crews fixing the road in a part of the city where residents feel overlooked.
“We’re finding that there’s more development that’s on the way, and we’re very excited about it,” she said. “We’re hoping that we’ll have more development of housing in the area.”