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May 13, 2008

Trapped in Detroit

Filed under: Main — Ryan Jones @ 12:20 pm

If you need to go anywhere in the Detroit area today – you probably can’t get there. There’s nothing in town to cause extra traffic, it’s just that the state has totally fucked up every major roadway there is.

Detroit has 2 major arteries. I-75 and I-94. One goes north and south, the other east and west. They both go through downtown Detroit, and intersect at a 30 degree angle somehow just near the city limits. They’re the main route into, out of, through, or around the city – as well as the only path for truckers going to and from Canada.

For the past few months I-75 has been shut down for 5-10 miles near the bridge to Canada. The detour has been to take 94 and then hop onto 75 north of the construction. As I found out today on my way to the eye doctor though, the detour is closed. The new detour is to get off on Warren Avenue – only Warren Avenue is under construction too.

So let’s recap. Freeway closed. Detour closed, and the Detour to the Detour is closed. This left me driving in circles for nearly an hour before I found a way to get back on the freeway and head home.

That’s just going northbound. Going south is a whole new can of worms. Since 94 only hits 75 north of Detroit, the southern detour is currently to take 94 west (out of the way) to southfield. Get off, drive 3 miles along the street in front of my house, and then get onto 75 where there’s no construction. This detour has been in effect for about 2 months now, and already it’s impossible for me to get out of my subdivision between the hours of 8am and 7pm. The road is constantly full of trucks and it’s impossible for me to drive anywhere.

Worse yet, the 75 construction is going to be this way for 2-3 more years. They’re redoing the whole thing with no plans of opening it. Worse yet, the current detour (southfield, the main street by me) is scheduled to be renovated DURING the 75 shutdown. Yes, that’s right, they’re shutting down another detour.

Does anybody at MDOT talk to each other? Why can’t you do one project at a time? Is it really necessary? What idiot decided to shut down the detour of the detour of the detour? This morning I managed to lose track of what I was actually detouring from. At one point, my GPS actually just said “stop at closest gas station and ask where the fuck you are.”

I can’t wait until the Southfield construction starts – at that point I will have no way to get to Detroit or anywhere north of there without turning a normal 15 minute drive into a 2 hour side street fiasco.


  1. Just to toss my two cents in, I’m a Wayne State student, and I got to class reasonably well at about 4:30pm. Some hiccups, but that’s always been there.

    Comment by Mike — May 13, 2008 @ 5:15 pm

  2. As someone who travels often to other cities in the United States and internationally, the frequency and severity of road construction in Metro Detroit is certainly puzzling.

    First of all, without alternative mode of rapid transit options, residents have no choice but to drive themselves everywhere they need to go. That is absolutely frustrating.

    And then, when roads needed to be fixed, the projects seem to occur simultaneously. These projects practically render the average driver helpless because like what happened to you, they are also driving around in circles. It is absolutely ridiculous and shows how little the leadership here cares for its citizens.

    Comment by dtip — May 15, 2008 @ 6:08 am

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