Traverse City Commissioners Vote to Seek Legal Advice on MDOT Construction Agreement

Following their meeting on Monday, Traverse City commissioners are seeking legal opinion on an old agreement between the city and the Michigan Department of Transportation.

A 1947 agreement states that neither the city or MDOT can undertake construction projects on the Grandview Parkway without full consent from the other party.

With deadlines for the design approaching, the clock is ticking.

“[MDOT] have a deadline near the latter part of April that they’re saying they need 98% plans, and we’re just receiving plans, for instance on landscaping, so we’re just having a chance to start taking a look at these things,” said City Manager Martin Colburn.

Mayor Richard Lewis was the one who asked commissioners to get legal advice on the agreement.

“MDOT has a timeline to start work on it the spring of next year and this is one of those items that if we don’t get cleared up, could become a monkey wrench in the works,” said Lewis.

City leaders believe this grants them full approval power over the state’s design plans.

However, MDOT argued a few years prior that the state had exclusive construction power over the project.272983859 263954522589082 8775663344635085010 N

Being a nineteen million dollar project, the city is concerned with making all the proper reviews they need to.

“The city commission is now asking—we want to review that 1947 agreement because, not just for this project, but for future projects as well—as to how this influences how we work with MDOT on these properties,” said Colburn.

Commissioners also approved an easement grant to the Grand Traverse County Road Commission on Monday—to build a leg of a new roundabout.

The next city commission meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 22.