MDOT trying warning signs on I-69 to give drivers a chance to avoid construction

SHIAWASSEE COUNTY (WJRT) - (5/31/2019) - Construction is coming to a 4.5-mile stretch of I-69 through Shiawassee County beginning Monday.

This stretch of I-69 in Shiawassee County will be under construction from Monday into September.

The Michigan Department of Transportation is expecting slowdowns, but they're hoping a new signage method could ease congestion.

"With any kind of a lane closure out there we get back ups," said engineer Keith Brown.

MDOT is planning an advance warning signage system on I-69 on either side of M-52 and Bath Road that will give drivers a chance to exit before they get caught in a traffic jam.

"What that will do is, if we have any kind of a back up coming into the lane closures we will have message boards out there that will measure," Brown said. "If we get so slow or if traffic actually stops it will tell you, stopped traffic 2 miles ahead or 4 miles ahead -- whatever the distance happens to be."

The placement of the signs allows drivers to exit the roadway at Lansing Road and come re-enter on the other end of the construction, avoiding some of the back up.

"We're going to close the left lane in both directions and you'll see a bunch of work in the median as we prepare the crossovers. Once we have the crossovers completed, they'll also be doing some concrete patches in the left lanes," Brown said. "Once the cross overs are done and we get all the traffic over to one side of I-69 we will start the reconstruction on the other side, we'll switch everyone over and do the other bound. You'll see concrete patches and right and left lane closures through the area."

While most of the 4.5-mile project will be simple repaving, 700 feet will be reconstructed due to its deterioration.

"We're doing a little deeper section there to get the soil to drain and put a lightweight fill in there and some geo-grid to hold it in there, and hopefully we wont have that rough section anymore," Brown said.

The project starts Monday and should wrap up in September depending on the weather.