Crews patch potholes on I-75, closing freeway for hours

By: Terry Oparka | Troy Times | Published January 22, 2019

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TROY — Single-digit temperatures followed by daytime warming Jan. 21 made for the perfect storm of potholes along Interstate 75 in Troy.

Troy Police Department Sgt. Meghan Lehman said that the potholes popped up along northbound Interstate 75 from Interstate 696 to Square Lake Road at about 4 p.m. Jan. 21 — prompting closure of all northbound lanes until 10 p.m. that evening.

One lane of traffic remained open in that stretch along southbound lanes, with all lanes opening to traffic by 11:30 p.m. Jan. 21.

“Eight vehicles were disabled Jan. 21, and five today (as of 10 a.m. Jan. 22) with tire and wheel damage,” Lehman said.

Diane Cross, a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Transportation, said that as of 10:30 a.m. Jan. 22, the worst spots for the potholes were the northbound lanes of Interstate 75, near Big Beaver and Crooks roads.

One lane of traffic remained open on northbound lanes from Interstate 696 to Adams Road the morning of Jan. 22 while crews patched the potholes.

However, Cross cautioned that crews patching the freeway will “be happening all the time” until the northbound lanes of the freeway close down completely for reconstruction in early March as part of the Interstate 75 modernization project.

She explained that the frigid temperatures and “intense freezing” cause the earth to move. Then the ice melts, traffic bears down, causing the roadway — “already in bad shape” —  to crumble, creating “cavernous holes.”

In early March, traffic on the northbound lanes of Interstate 75 from Crooks Road to 13 Mile Road will be diverted to southbound lanes, maintaining two lanes of traffic in each direction, while the northbound stretch of the freeway is reconstructed.

That arrangement will switch to the newly constructed northbound lanes in 2020, when that segment is slated to finish.

The third and final phase will be from 13 Mile Road to Eight Mile Road. The anticipated completion is in the fall of 2023.

For updates on the construction project, visit www.modernize 75.com.

For updates on the pothole patching on I-75, follow @MDOT_MetroDet on Twitter.

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