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  1. #101

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    New Press Release

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE MONDAY, JANUARY 25, 2016
    CONTACT: Rob Morosi, MDOT Office of Communications, 248-483-5107, [email protected]

    Land use options next stage of possible

    I-375 transformation in Detroit

    January 25, 2016 -- A transformation of the I-375 freeway is still an option. That is one of the conclusions reached by a recent study conducted by the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. (DEGC) and the Detroit RiverFront Conservancy (DRFC), and was announced today to key stakeholders along the corridor. The key observation from this Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) study is that a connection to the riverfront from I-375 is essential.

    While all six alternatives for the freeway transformation are still on the table, the next step is conducting a land use study before a final decision is made on a preference.

    The PEL study is intended to streamline planning efforts to reduce time and cost during future project phases. Results completed under this study are intended to be used during a future analysis required under the National Environmental Policy Act.

    "An in-depth analysis of transportation operations lead us to six viable alternatives," said Kelby Wallace, MDOT project manager. "The next step is to look at land use options in conjunction with the existing alternatives and how they function with other efforts taking place near I-375."

    Other pursuits that may influence future land use options include the East Jefferson/Riverfront study by the RiverFront Conservancy, Eastern Market's long-range plan, Brewster Douglass development, and M-3 (Gratiot Avenue) as a bus rapid transit (BRT) route and its connection to I-375. Recommendations from these activities will help guide future land use options if the I-375 corridor is changed from its current below-grade freeway configuration.

    "There is no timetable set for when a land use analysis will be started," said Wallace. "We will review the completion of other studies as a template for potential opportunities for land use around I-375."

    It is expected the land use study will analyze opportunities such as additional neighborhood connectivity, improved gateway to the riverfront, and further development potential.
    A review of the six alternatives is available at www.michigan.gov/i375study.

  2. #102

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    And in the Freep:

    http://www.freep.com/story/money/bus...ront/79293830/

    A recommendation on what to do with Detroit's aging I-375 expressway, originally expected more than a year ago, has now been delayed indefinitely.

    A lack of consensus and money has pushed off a decision for now, Kelby Wallace, a senior project manager with the Michigan Department of Transportation, said Monday.


    Wallace on Monday morning was informing an advisory committee of stakeholders of the need for more study. Stakeholders involved in the project planning have included representatives of the City of Detroit, the regional planning agency SEMCOG, major property owners such as General Motors, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, DTE Energy, and Rock Ventures, the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, and philanthropic funders including the Kresge Foundation and Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, among others.


    Wallace said six options outlined two years ago remain on the table. Those include rebuilding I-375 as is as a below-grade expressway or replacing it with a surface street that would connect better with the rapidly redeveloping east riverfront district. The various options would cost from about $45 million to $80 million for design and construction.


    "We actually made a determination that we are not announcing any recommend alternatives," Wallace told the Free Press this morning. "It doesn't make sense really to rush this decision at this moment because we've got a lot of other things going on and our funding picture isn't there."


    The effort to rethink I-375 has been hampered by a number of events, including the distraction created by a failed 2015 ballot proposal for road funding that diverted MDOT's attention, and the revamping of the City of Detroit's planning efforts coming out of the city's bankruptcy. And the city's new planning director, Maurice Cox, hopes to do more studies on what to do with sites near I-375 including the demolished Brewster Douglass housing project, and a decision is still needed about what to do with the delayed Wayne County Jail project.


    Planners also hope to learn the future of possible mass transit options under the Regional Transportation Authority before moving forward on I-375.


    "Let's make allow some of these other things to come together so we can use that information to make the best decision," Wallace said.


    As a result, MDOT will continue to repair bridges over I-375 and other bits of the aging infrastructure pending some future date when a full-scale recommendation will be made.


    Of the various options for I-375, the ones that excited the most interest were the ideas to rip out the expressway and replace it with a surface street. If Detroit did that, it would be just the latest major city to remove expressways built a half-century ago when urban expressways were thought essential to building efficient routes for commuters.


    But since then, many cities and their planning staffs have rethought those assumptions. Urban expressways are now viewed more negatively, requiring the displacement of neighborhoods like Detroit's long-vanished Black Bottom district. Advocates now say that replacing urban expressways with surface streets allow for more pedestrian friendly urban environments.


    Kelbe said the preliminary studies showed that removing I-375 for a surface street had lots of appeal.


    "It definitely is feasible and there definitely are different types of benefits that the freeway does not present," he said. "You have additional connectivity, you're opening up some ares to access that previously were not accessible." And the impact on the movement on traffic is tolerable, he added. "Traffic doesn't operate quite as well but it still operates in an acceptable manner for our accepted traffic standards."


    Built in 1964 at a cost of $50 million, the I-375 freeway runs for slightly more than a mile along Detroit’s east side and is now reaching the end of its useful life. When the study of alternatives for I-375 began, planners said they initially hoped to make a recommendation among six alternatives by mid to late 2014.


    Contact John Gallagher: 313-222-5173 or [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @jgallagherfreep.

  3. #103

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    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE TUESDAY, MAY 2, 2017

    CONTACT: Rob Morosi, MDOT Office of Communications, 248-483-5107
    [email protected]

    MDOT hosting open house to discuss next steps on
    I-375 environmental study in Detroit
    WHAT:
    An open house-style meeting to gather public input from interested parties about the next steps involved in the I-375 environmental study in Detroit. The open house will focus on the requirements set forth by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). A formal presentation will take place at 5:30 p.m., followed by a community conversation format from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

    WHO:
    Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) staff
    City of Detroit Planning Department
    Consultant staff
    Residents and interested stakeholders

    WHEN/WHERE:
    Wednesday, May 17, 2017
    5 - 7:30 p.m.


    Eastern Market Shed 5
    2934 Russell St.
    Detroit

    Accommodations can be made for persons with disabilities and limited English speaking ability. Large print materials, auxiliary aids or the services of interpreters, signers, or readers available upon request. Please call 517-373-2227 to request at least seven days before meeting date.

    BACKGROUND:
    In 2014, MDOT in collaboration with the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. (DEGC) and the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy (DRFC) completed a Planning and Environmental Linkage (PEL) study on the current I-375 freeway in downtown Detroit. The results of the study indicated that something must be done with the 50-year-old-plus freeway due to its outdated design and the poor condition of the infrastructure. The study determined that a transformation of the freeway to a surface street was feasible, although a final determination could not be reached due to more required study. Six illustrative alternatives were developed and shared with the public and stakeholders during the PEL study.


    In 2017, MDOT, the City of Detroit, and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) have launched an Environmental Assessment (EA) study to further review traffic operations, social, economic and environmental impacts, engage the public, and analyze how study alternatives fit with city planning initiatives.


    A review of the previous PEL study, the six alternatives, and submitting comments can be obtained by visiting www.michigan.gov/i375study.

  4. #104

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    Here's a really good document on the previously discussed alternatives: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/md...6_525069_7.pdf

  5. #105

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    Kudos to MDOT for scheduling this at 5:00 so more people have an better chance to attend. It's as if they actually want community input.

  6. #106

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    The official start is 5:30. Doors open at 5. I want to add that each alternative has it's short comings. I'm partial to Alternative #6 because, if altered to my vision, it would offer the best opportunity for economic development. Essentially Alternative #6 is a removal of the freeway with the service drives serving as new streets. The below-grade former freeway would be turned into a Dequindre Cut-esque bike and pedestrian path. It would cost the least among the alternatives (costing roughly the same Alternative #4).

    I would change Alternative #6 to consist of underground parking instead of an underground pedestrian and bike path. Residential and retail development would go above, positioned between the two one-way service drives. Another Dequindre Cut would be redundant. Also, if Dan Gilbert gets his way and gets a soccer stadium and other development on the "fail-jail" site, parking is going to be needed in that area. The City of Detroit could make money if it controlled the underground parking, but Gilbert could probably build it quicker. For me, it's a win-win proposition.
    Last edited by royce; May-05-17 at 03:49 AM.

  7. #107

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    Quote Originally Posted by royce View Post
    Another Dequindre Cut would be redundant.
    I agree with you about that. I'm an avid user of the Dequindre Cut, but I don't think having a similar thing so close and parallel to it would be a good use of space and money.

    The underground parking might work out, but I'd want to see private business pay for it.

    My favored alternative is 4 right now.

  8. #108

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    I don't think having more pedestrian access and green space leading to the riverfront is a bad thing. They are also adding more Dequindre Cut style paths east of the cut in an effort to connect more people to the river.

  9. #109

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    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE MONDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2017

    CONTACT: Rob Morosi, MDOT Office of Communications, 248-483-5107
    [email protected]

    MDOT hosting open house to discuss next steps on
    I-375 environmental study in Detroit
    WHAT:
    An open house-style meeting to update the public on the progress of the study, present the practical alternatives and to gather input from interested parties about further refinements to the I-375 environmental study in Detroit. The open house will focus on the practical alternatives that will be analyzed in the Environmental Assessment (EA) to be completed in 2018. Brief presentations will take place at 5 and 6 p.m. Attendees will be able to discuss the project with staff before and after the presentations.

    WHO:
    Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) staff
    City of Detroit Planning Department staff
    Consultant staff
    Residents and interested stakeholders

    WHEN/WHERE:
    Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017
    4 - 7:30 p.m.


    Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Adventure Center
    1801 Atwater St.
    Detroit

    Accommodations can be made for persons with disabilities and limited English speaking ability. Large print materials, auxiliary aids or the services of interpreters, signers, or readers available upon request. Please call 517-373-2227 to request at least seven days before meeting date.

    BACKGROUND:
    In 2014, MDOT conducted a Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) study for the I-375 corridor. Six illustrative alternatives were developed as a result of engineering studies and public involvement.

    In 2017, funding was identified that allowed MDOT, the City of Detroit, and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to launch an EA study. Screening criteria resulted in identifying two practical alternatives to carry forward in the study. Reconstructing the freeway will be carried forward for the duration of the study as a baseline to compare to other alternatives.


    The EA will further analyze these practical alternatives, traffic operations, and social, economic and environmental impacts, and engage the publicand other stakeholders who will ultimately identify a preferred alternative.


    The public is invited to visit www.michigan.gov/i375study to see a review of the previous PEL study and the six alternatives. Comments can be submitted on the website as well.

  10. #110

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    MDOT moving ahead with plan to rip out I-375

    After years of study and debate, the Michigan Department of Transportation is moving ahead with plans to rip out Detroit's I-375 expressway and restore a surface street there.It won't happen overnight. The soonest MDOT might move ahead is about 2022, provided details are settled and funding arranged.But the commitment to remove I-375 and restore a surface street puts Detroit firmly in the ranks of cities trying to undo the damage done a half-century ago by ramming high-speed freeways through urban neighborhoods.In its place, MDOT would create a surface street with landscaped medians, bicycle lanes and other amenities.

    From Detroit Free Press
    http://on.freep.com/2zP5RyJ

  11. #111

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    http://www.dailydetroit.com/2019/10/...evard-by-2024/

    Daily Detroit: I-375 to become a boulevard by 2024

  12. #112

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    More details can be found here, but a new interchnage design option was presented.

    The team shared refinements to the Practical Alternative, including the new interchange design 5B. It was shared that the 5B alternative is still being analyzed but preliminary highlights include greater local connectivity, slightly longer travel time to access the boulevard, some additional traffic re-routing to Brush and Woodward during peak hours, more land available for redevelopment, and lower cost for construction and maintenance.

  13. #113

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    Wow. After reading that study, I'm left almost feeling sorry for MDOT. What a mess of planning they have to do on this!

  14. #114

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    I think a Gratiot connector from I-75 should remain in some form. Things can be brought to grade to help Eastern Market reconnect, but i use that daily along with thousands of others traveling on 75 and I think it would be a problem if all the traffic had to utilize the Mack exit to access Gratiot and the near East-side.

  15. #115

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    Quote Originally Posted by Knocturnal View Post
    MDOT moving ahead with plan to rip out I-375After years of study and debate, the Michigan Department of Transportation is moving ahead with plans to rip out Detroit's I-375 expressway and restore a surface street there.It won't happen overnight. The soonest MDOT might move ahead is about 2022, provided details are settled and funding arranged.But the commitment to remove I-375 and restore a surface street puts Detroit firmly in the ranks of cities trying to undo the damage done a half-century ago by ramming high-speed freeways through urban neighborhoods.In its place, MDOT would create a surface street with landscaped medians, bicycle lanes and other amenities.From Detroit Free Presshttp://on.freep.com/2zP5RyJ
    Good thing road funding has never been an issue in Michigan.

  16. #116

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    Quote Originally Posted by DetroitSoldier View Post
    I think a Gratiot connector from I-75 should remain in some form. Things can be brought to grade to help Eastern Market reconnect, but i use that daily along with thousands of others traveling on 75 and I think it would be a problem if all the traffic had to utilize the Mack exit to access Gratiot and the near East-side.
    You can still get onto the freeways from Gratiot, except instead of doing it at the current connector, you would do it at the new boulevard. The new boulevard north of Gratiot is essentially a really long onramp.

  17. #117

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    They should remove that curve too. Just bring it all to the surface.

    The only good highway is a removed highway.

  18. #118

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    Quote Originally Posted by 401don View Post
    Good thing road funding has never been an issue in Michigan.
    Never seems to be an issue with MDOT whenever they want to do something.

  19. #119

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    They should daylight Savoyard Creek and reroute it through 375 to the river.

  20. #120

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    Perfect time to start the Jefferson Ave. QLine extension!

  21. #121

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    I don't really understand the new option. I like the fact that it creates a Gratiot intersection, but it doesn't seem like you can continue up the boulevard to Brush Park. It seems like if you follow the boulevard north from Gratiot, you have to get on 75 in one way or the other. I feel like it would make more sense for a traditional bridge over 75 to connect to Brush Park, with entrances and exits to 75

  22. #122

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    Quote Originally Posted by JonWylie View Post
    I don't really understand the new option. I like the fact that it creates a Gratiot intersection, but it doesn't seem like you can continue up the boulevard to Brush Park. It seems like if you follow the boulevard north from Gratiot, you have to get on 75 in one way or the other. I feel like it would make more sense for a traditional bridge over 75 to connect to Brush Park, with entrances and exits to 75
    I actually am really impressed with the new option (5B). I will give MDOT credit, as I didn’t think they had it in them to propose something like this. As far as the Brush Park connection, I am not sure if dumping the end of the boulevard (and vehicles that come with it) into a residential neighborhood is a good idea. I kind of like it that the boulevard terminus forces the vehicles out of the CBD. To me, the bigger need is ensuring pedestrians and bike access, which Option 5B appears to do.I am also impressed that with 5B they got rid of the freeway to freeway interchange feel (and land use footprint that goes with it). Granted I still wish they’d cap I-75 by Comerica Park, but I will give MDOT a lot of credit if Option 5B gets built. The proposed is much better than I was expecting.
    Last edited by Atticus; October-23-19 at 03:08 PM.

  23. #123

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    Quote Originally Posted by Atticus View Post
    I actually am really impressed with the new option (5B). I will give MDOT credit, as I didn’t think they had it in them to propose something like this. As far as the Brush Park connection, I am not sure if dumping the end of the boulevard (and vehicles that come with it) into a residential neighborhood is a good idea. I kind of like it that the boulevard terminus forces the vehicles out of the CBD. To me, the bigger need is ensuring pedestrians and bike access, which Option 5B appears to do.I am also impressed that with 5B they got rid of the freeway to freeway interchange feel (and land use footprint that goes with it). Granted I still wish they’d cap I-75 by Comerica Park, but I will give MDOT a lot of credit if Option 5B gets built. The proposed is much better than I was expecting.
    I do like that 5B has a reduced footprint. I do worry about all those dead ends in Brush Park, but I’m not sure why one would want to connect the boulevard to all those small residential streets. I am curious what the design of that area would look like. A guard rail and some dead ends won’t make these end blocks very attractive/ nor would a sound barrier wall. Since Bedrock owns development rights to that part of Brush Park I’m sure they’ll make pains to have multi-modal connections eastward to the Market.

  24. #124

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    Are they going to make I-75 continue on naturally instead of seeming to split off from itself which it does today, I'm sure much to the confusion of out-of-towners.

  25. #125

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    Quote Originally Posted by sirrealone View Post
    Are they going to make I-75 continue on naturally instead of seeming to split off from itself which it does today, I'm sure much to the confusion of out-of-towners.
    That is the plan, and honestly it's the part about this that excites me the most. My wife and I both hate that interchange after I got rear ended and my car totaled 5 years ago when some idiot shot from the left lane of 375 over to the Mack exit, cutting off the guy in front of me.

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