MDOT: I-75 construction project could be done 10 years early

Posted at 10:26 AM, Sep 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-18 18:22:39-04

The 17-year plan to improve I-75 could be done 10 years early, the Michigan Department of Transportation announced on Monday.

According to MDOT, they are using a long-term approach to the project that is expected to reduce the construction schedule, limiting the long-term inconvenience to motorists and achieve full economic benefit.

May 2017I-75 in Oakland County down to 2 lanes; massive project resumes
August 2016Massive I-75 construction project underway in Oakland County
July 2016I-75 construction project coming in August

The project spans 18 miles of freeway between South Boulevard and 8 Mile in Oakland County. The first phase was completed between Coolidge Highway and South Blvd. earlier this month.

Now, MDOT is using a design, build, finance and maintain (DBFM) method between 8 Mile and 13 Mile through Hazel Park, Madison Heights and Royal Oak.

The DBFM method was selected because of its ability to accomplish all of the necessary work and transfer more risk to the private sector, according to MDOT. The selected contractor will be given annual payments based on detailed conditions and performance.

MDOT will also use a design-build contract to expedite construction between Coolidge Highway and 13 Mile, which will reduce the remaining construction segments from eight to two, with the potential to shave 10 years off the project.

Originally, the plan called for construction in 2018 from Wattles to Coolidge, a tunnel and construction from from 8 Mile to 12 Mile in 2020, A braid and work from north of I-696 to 12 Mile in 2022, Rochester to Wattles in 2024, 13 Mile to Rochester in 2026, 12 Mile to 13 Mile in 2028, 9 Mile to I-696 in 2030 and 8 Mile to 9 Mile in 2032.

Now, the plan is to combine those into a northern segment and southern segment. The southern segment will be under construction first, according to MDOT, and will span 8 Mile to 13 Mile.