MDOT starts work Monday on half a dozen traffic signals across Northern lower Michigan.
“We’re going to be making some upgrades to six signal locations in northern Lower Michigan,” says spokesman James Lake.
The signal upgrades are coming to major trunk lines and highway intersections across the region.
That includes spots like this one on US-31 in Elk Rapids. Improvements will also be coming to US-131 north of Mancelona, US-31 south of Benzonia, and US-31 south of Manistee, plus two spots along M-66 near Lake City.
The signal changes are designed to improve safety and traffic flow.
“We’re going to be adding what we call detection to those signals. And those will detect the presence of vehicles and their different legs at the intersections and can modify the operation of those signals to be more efficient,” Lake says. “So if there isn’t a vehicle waiting at a particular leg of the intersection, we can extend the green time for the other direction of travel.”
Keep an eye out for work crews and slow down in these areas.
“We may have some traffic shifts, but we should be able to maintain one lane of traffic in each direction throughout this work,” he adds. MDOT will also be making changes to the pedestrian crossing at the intersection in Elk Rapids.
The upgrades represent at $475,000 investment and will take approximately until mid-June to complete.
These types of improvements are becoming more common, Lake says. “More and more on the state trunk lines. We’ll have detection in some form or another, whether it’s some sort of visual device above the intersection or what we call PODs that are that are included in the pavement that detect a vehicle above them.”