FLINT (WJRT) (3/8/2018) - Road construction season is about to get going, which will affect motorists on a busy stretch of I-69 in Flint between I-75 and I-475.
Crews will begin preparations for a $34 million reconstruction project on the two-mile stretch by setting up barricades to move both directions of traffic onto the eastbound lanes.
The work will cause a variety of lane and ramp closures beginning Monday.
"Monday will be a rough day," said Keith Brown, operations engineer for the Michigan Department of Transportation's Davison service center.
The three lanes of eastbound I-69 will be narrowed to one, the ramps to I-75 will be closed and the Hammerberg Road interchange will be closed.
"So the whole area through there, east bound will be rough Monday and Tuesday," Brown said.
The troubled stretch of I-69 between Ballenger Highway and Fenton Road will be completely reconstructed from the soil up with new pavement.
"We started last fall with some of the prep work, the widening of the shoulder and the crossovers in the median," Brown said. "We're starting next week to get all the traffic on the eastbound roadway."
By March 17, both directions of traffic will be moved to the eastbound side. Then the big focus will on the westbound side, where a new pavement is being tested.
"It will have a little thicker concrete on top -- 10.5 inches opposed to 9.5 inches," Brown said. "And then there is aggregate underneath there. There is a 6-inch layer that's treated with cement and then there is another layer with aggregate, then eight inches of sand and eight inches of treated subgrade."
While this type of pavement is more expensive, MDOT expects it to be worth it in the long run.
The westbound lanes are expected to be complete by July, weather permitting, so crews can switch and begin reconstructing the eastbound side. The entire project should be wrapped up in November.