Residents and officials meet to discuss two proposed designs for the Beck Road improvement project during a public input meeting Tuesday, Feb. 1, at the Novi Police Department’s training center. The project aims to improve traffic flow and safety and increase the quality of life in the area along Beck Road between Pontiac Trail and Six Mile Road.

Residents and officials meet to discuss two proposed designs for the Beck Road improvement project during a public input meeting Tuesday, Feb. 1, at the Novi Police Department’s training center. The project aims to improve traffic flow and safety and increase the quality of life in the area along Beck Road between Pontiac Trail and Six Mile Road.

Photos by Brian Wells


Novi residents voice concerns over Beck Road plans

By: Brian Wells | Novi Note | Published February 2, 2022

 Novi City Manager Pete Auger, second from right, listens while residents voice their opinions on the Beck Road improvement project Tuesday, Feb. 1, at the Novi Police Department’s training center.

Novi City Manager Pete Auger, second from right, listens while residents voice their opinions on the Beck Road improvement project Tuesday, Feb. 1, at the Novi Police Department’s training center.

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Residents who may be affected by the Beck Road expansion project had a chance to voice their opinions on two proposed designs at a town hall-style meeting Feb. 1.

The Beck Road Business Corridor Improvement Project is the result of a regional effort between Commerce Township, Wixom, Novi, Northville and Northville Township. Its goal is to transform the road from a two- and three-lane road to a five-lane road between Pontiac Trail and Six Mile Road. By doing this, the hope is to improve traffic flow and safety and increase the quality of life in the region.

Two designs were on display at the meeting. One design showed Beck Road as a five-lane road with a center turn lane from Eight Mile Road to 12 Mile Road. The other — the boulevard concept — turned the same stretch of road into a four-lane road with a center median.

Many people who attended the meeting agree that something has to happen, but many weren’t happy with either concept.

Kasturi Bagchi, a resident of Novi, said she had mixed feelings about the designs. She said that something needs to be done to relieve the traffic, but she was worried about the construction timeline and the noise that might come from the widened road.

“Nobody wants to live next to the hustle and bustle,” she said. 

Of the proposed designs, Bagchi said she preferred the boulevard design, though she considered it “the lesser of two evils.”

“I don’t want it to look like I live off Novi Road,” she said. 

Laura Steiner, a resident of “Noville” — an area that falls within the Novi city limits, but has a Northville mailing address and is considered part of the Northville school district — has lived in the area since 1982.

Steiner believes the project is necessary, though if she had her way, the area would be turned back into farmland and dirt roads. But if the project has to be done, she would like to see more trees added to help buffer the noise.

She said she used to be able to sit outside and not hear anything, but because of the increase in traffic, now all she can hear is the noise from the busy road. She worries that the project will increase the traffic and the noise.

“(The project) has gotta happen,” she said. “But it’s a lose-lose.”

Paul Aldanelli, a resident of Novi, said he preferred the boulevard idea, saying it spreads out and slows traffic. Most of the problem is between Six and Seven Mile roads in Northville, he said.

“Beck Road is a disaster,” he said.

But despite negative reactions — including some residents who didn’t want the project to happen — Novi City Manager Pete Auger said the road has to be resurfaced, and that would be the best time to do the project.

“That’s the time you make improvements,” he said.

While the project has been in the planning stages for a number of years, federal funding for it is still several years out, he said. Construction likely won’t begin until federal funding has been obtained, although the city is constantly working on obtaining it, he said.

The meeting was one of several that have been held to gather public opinion on the project. Officials have heard different thoughts and ideas at each, Auger said. After the meeting, the committee in charge of the project will meet and discuss the input gathered from the meeting.

Initially, they had three or four designs, Auger said, but had narrowed it down to two.

For residents who wish to learn more or submit their input on the project, they can do so by visiting becktothefuture.org.

Contact Brian Wells at (586) 498-1081, (248) 291-7637 or bwells@candgnews.com.

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