Oak Street slated for repair

Sunday Times Newspapers

WYANDOTTE — The city received grant money from the Federal Highway Administrative to make improvements on Oak Street between Fort and 11th streets.

The grant is valued at $152,368, City Engineer Mark Kowalewski said, and will be used to make the section of Oak Street comply with federal guidelines set by the Michigan Department of Transportation. He said the street — which has two travel lanes with street parking and a turning lane — does not comply with the new MDOT guidelines, and will have to be changed.

MDOT determined the road is not wide enough to accommodate the travel lanes, turning lane, and parking. The city had to consider new options — one that would allow for a turning lane and the other allowed for parking on the south side of the street — to reach compliance with the new guidelines. The street will not be converted to asphalt, Kowalewski said, so the concrete will be cut out and replaced.

The council said the determination by MDOT was odd, but they had no choice other than approve one of the two options. They made a unanimous decision to keep parking on the south side of the street and remove the turning lane. Councilman Lawrence Stec said there hasn’t been a large number of accidents in the past, so he did not understand the reasoning behind the decision.

“I question the wisdom of the state when they made this determination,” Stec said. “This (layout) has been working since the 1960s. I don’t think we’ve had any real problems there and now it has to be changed. I’m all for the new roadway, but I still wonder what their criteria was for this new standard.”

(Gabriel Goodwin can be reached at ggoodwin@bewickpublications.com.)