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MJLO

Michigan's Freeway system.

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I've been doing some research on M-Dots future plans. The Freeway system in MI kind of looks like a dotted line, especially when you get north of M-46. I Don't think freeways are all bad, especially when you get up north, a better connected northern Michigan, could be better economically. And better for Michigan. Do you know if there was an original plan for US 131 to connect all the way to the 80/90 ? Are they going to finish Connecting US-31 to the 196, which technically should just be 31 from Holland down? If you look at a map of the state, It looks like they didn't finish what they started, especially up north 131, US-10, 31. Any Do you all have any opinions on, if they should better connect us with Interstates? I know that in the cities, we need better freeways, but we desperately need, better mass transit. But as for the state, I think it could impact growth and economy if we made some areas much more accessible.

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The only connection I would like to see finished is US-127 north of Lansing. That's fine if 131 were to connect to Traverse City, but in my mind, there really isn't a reason to build more freeways up north.

A major alternative I've noticed a lot up north is the building of passing lanes. If you ever drive up M-33 on the east side of the state or US-23 up the Huron Coast, you'll notice a few passing lanes. They exist for about 2 miles in each direction so that there is enough time to get past slow traffic. This is usually a problem during peak travel times in any given season, especially summer Friday nights and Sunday nights.

I remember a plan to extend a freeway from Bay City to Alpena, paralleling US-23. Things like this are not a necessity. There simply is not enough traffic or economic demand to justify it. For now, passing lanes work just fine, in my opinion.

Portions of Route 2 in the UP might be a different story. :)

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well I understand what you are saying, I guess my opinion is more of the question of, If you build it, they will come. If you make it easier to drive across the Upper Peninsula, would it encourage more commerce, spurring more growth?

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it might encourage sprawl. and i dont know if there is a need for anymore expressways across the UP. I was driving down 75 on my way up to the Soo a few weeks ago and for most of my drive in the UP, there were no, or very few cars sharing the road with me.

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i wonder what would happen to the upper peninsuala economically if US 41 converted into a freeway.

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you'd get easier access to Wisconsin, and Minnesota, easier way for shipping goods, bring more commerce, maybe even more industry

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I think it would be smart to connect the eastern and western halves of the UP via a freeway. I'm not talking about building a whole network simply a straight line through. Everything else seems to work just fine. Maybe a branch of 131 to Traverse City would give it a closer connection with the south. IMO, sprawl has already taken hold where it's going to, so the fear of creating sprawl through rural areas isn't much of a concern to me.

Michi, I think it was announced recently that they are finishing US 127 north of Lansing. Though, I can't remember when that will be.

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So you mean they are going to turn that stretch from St. Johns to North of M-57 into freeway, In Gratiot county?

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That last stretch of 127 would make sense. M-57 now goes up and over 127 at that junction.

http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=st+...7,3.911133&om=1

Added highways in Northern Michigan and the UP would not aid their economies, especially as we continue to move away from manufacturing to a service-based economy. It would just shift people from one area to another, like it is starting to do in Cadillac with the 131 bypass finished. All the new construction is occuring along E Boon Road (?) and 131, but the population is not growing.

The weather in the UP is just not condusive to massive expansion (of people or commerce). The Winters up there are very hostile. People can barely stand the Winters in Southern lower Michigan.

Why burden future generations with the cost of additional highways that are not needed, will not grow the economy, and grossly distorts growth patterns? I know MJLO, you probably think I'm following you. :lol:

I don't at all think highways are evil. They serve a very critical function. I just think we need to think very hard about adding any more to our poorly-maintained current highway system. And I would rather see voters asked to fund mass transit in the near future rather than additional highway miles.

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^Agree with everything you just said. I've lived all my life up north before college, so I have a pretty good feel for the economy up there...esp the northeast corner. There's not much that can save that are, but I think it is very much sustainable. All of the future growth in the north will occur west of I-75.

The freeway may provide an economic stimulus for the communities that are on its route, but it's usually limited to services offered at or near exit/entrance ramps (transit stops if you will) or transportation-driven development, like warehouses or trucking facilities.

I almost wouldn't mind seeing a toll road from US-127 to the Mackinac Bridge. And one on I-94 between Chicago and Detroit.

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ive always wondered why we have no toll roads in Michigan. When i went to Florida i was amazed at all the toll roads.

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lol, why though?i just think its weired since like all the other states have toll reads.

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We've been spoiled. "Free" driving is almost a right, here in Michigan. I'm not making a judgement either way, but our car culture is so ingrained in our culture, here, toll roads would be a helluva' sale to Michiganians. Not only would the working class rail against any plans to make any major stretches of freeways tollroads, but the large trucking/transportation lobbies that use our roads heavily would rail against it as it's an added hinderance to freedom of movement.

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i wouldnt mind a few toll highways, since dont they pretty much pay for their own mantinence?

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NO TOLL ROADS!

I want Michigan to be as least like Ohio as possible.

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i wouldnt mind a few toll highways, since dont they pretty much pay for their own mantinence?

Actually, doesn't part of the toll go to maintenance? What I also worry about toll roads is that states have privatized them, which I think is the worst thing you can do to the freedom of movement.

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NO TOLL ROADS!

I want Michigan to be as least like Ohio as possible.

lol, nice. I kind of agree with yoiu there.

I dont think they will ever make any of them in MI,i just thought it would make good discussion.

one thing i thought was weired about toll roads is how the gas stations were right on the highway, not off on a surface road.

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on toll roads you have a captive audience, it only makes sense to build oasis plazas you have to pay every time you get off.

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they could make more money the other way, lol :rolleyes:

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they could make more money the other way, lol :rolleyes:

The nice thing about toll roads is that they reduce sprawl, because they build far fewer access points (easier to maintain fewer toll booths and control access). Then they serve the purpose highways were meant for, which is efficient movement of traffic/commerce between cities. Not as a way to open Mobil Gas Stations and Wendy franchises.

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BTW, tollroads make much less since in Michigan than in most other states for the sole fact that were are surrouned by water on most sides, and that we don't get much cross-country traffic, save for the heavy truck traffic between the United States and Canada. Tolling roads is meant to help subsidize interstates that are more heavily used by out-of-staters. I'm not so sure that this toll wouldn't fall more heavily on the shoulders of the average citizen here in Michigan, which is exactly the people you don't want this to burden.

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that makes sense, if I 69 were a toll road it would make alot of money, because of all the freight going to and from Canada, but it would suck really bad for everyone in Flint, Lansing and all the places in between.

also, isnt there a toll road that comes very close to the border of Michigan in Ohio?

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The Ohio Turnpike

I use the Indiana Tollway and Chicago Skyway a lot since I visit Chicago frequently. Kind of sick of having to shell out a lot of change lately. Where did my IPASS transponder go???? :angry:

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