MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) – Summertime traffic continues to increase on U.S. 41 in Marquette Township during a major resurfacing project.
Michigan Department of Transportation spokesman, Dan Weingerten, said congested traffic and blocked off lanes will continue for at least the next four months.
“We started in early May and we anticipate the project will be over in late October,” Weingarten said.
Michigan is spending $9.2 million to resurface pavement and shoulders for both lanes of the busiest route in the Upper Peninsula.
“Thirty-three thousand vehicles a day use it,” Weingarten said. “It will provide a smoother driving surface, extend the service life of that area possibly 15 years before we have to go in and do another major project.”
Drivers may see the construction as a setback but at least one business along US-41 said it’s not decreasing the number of customers.
“Business has been really really well,” General manager, Brad Tryan, said. “We’ve been fortunate enough that they’ve been doing a lot of the work in the morning.”
Hudson’s actually seized the opportunity to brighten someone’s day with a sign that says, “DETOUR – GREAT FOOD KEEP RIGHT”.
“Most people look at road construction as a negative,” Tryan said. “We’re just doing something that’s a little bit fun for the community.”
The biggest problem the restaurant faces is not traffic, or even COVID-19 rules, it’s staffing.
“What’s been our biggest barrier has really been hiring,” Tryan said. “Even though our sales are really really good, we can use some more people to help better serve the community, extend our hours and be able to provide some great food.”
In addition to the highway repairs, MDOT is adding a non-motorized path for bikes and pedestrians near the Westwood Mall.
Construction for the path will start in the next two weeks.
Weingarten said traffic delays are about 5-10 minutes average, depending on the time of the day.
Copyright 2021 WLUC. All rights reserved.