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MDOT considers improvements to US-127/I-496 interchange

News

It’s a busy interchange where hundreds of crashes have happened over the last several years. 

On Monday, at least 3 crashes happened near the US-127 and I-496 interchange on Lansing’s southeast side.

According to Michigan State Police statistics, there have been more than 700 crashes in US-127 corridor between Jolly Road and I-496. At least 146 people were hurt in those crashes.

In 2018 alone, there have been nearly 90 crashes on that stretch.

It’s an issue that hits home for Attorney Stephen Sinas, who drives that stretch every day.

“It’s also something that’s near and dear to me because of family and friends and people I know who drive that roadway,” he said. “And it’s a roadway where there are just so many dangers from so many different directions.”

Officials with the Michigan Department of Transportation say they’ve made improvements over the last two years, hoping to lower the number of crashes.

“Doing our concrete patching that we’ve done over the past two summers,” Thomas Fisher, Operations Engineer, MDOT Lansing Transportation Service Center, said. “We actually just did a cable rail in that median through that corridor to try and cut down on crossover crashes.”

And more plans are in the works, including improving the exit from northbound 127 to Trowbridge Road to make the curve not as sharp. That won’t take place until 2022.

But in 2020, they plan to add a “high-friction surface” between Kalamazoo Street and I-496.

“The crashes that we have seen out there typically go up when we have wet pavement out there. And this would help reduce those crashes,” Fisher said.

But in the meantime, Sinas says he hopes people exercise patience, and not drive distracted, especially on this busy stretch of freeway.

“Make a commitment that they’re gonna be more careful and watch out for themselves while traveling the roadway,” he said.

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