By Jessica Mathews /

Some bump-outs for speed control are being added to a road project in the City of Howell.

Design engineering for the East Clinton Resurfacing Project was approved by Council last September. It’s being funded largely through a grant and low-interest state loan. With plans around 80% complete, staff has been working with engineers to finalize details. As typical, it’s also around the time staff likes to meet with residents and businesses directly impacted by the work. A meeting was held in August on the lawn at City Hall about the project details and design and what to expect during construction. Speeding was noted as a recurring concern.

A memo states that Clinton is a fairly straight and long section of road with a wide cross section and is often used as a cut-thru for Grand River. To try and address that issue and speeding concerns, staff has been working with engineers to investigate bump-outs at some of the intersections, as well as installing outside lane lines to give the appearance of narrow lanes. At the most recent virtual meeting, City Council authorized proceeding with design of the bump-outs. It was noted during the meeting there will be a little extra cost in the curbing but there would be less paving costs so based on prices, the cost should be minimal or negligible.

Mayor Pro-Tem Steve Manor said hopefully they can achieve some effect on the tendency for people to speed down a wide street and installing the bump-outs and doing striping in an appropriate way might encourage people to slow down a little bit. Manor said he felt it’s a good attempt to reduce speed on the street and was encouraged they might be able to do it without a huge additional cost.

Councilman Bob Ellis wanted to make sure the bump-outs wouldn’t interfere with the ability of fire trucks to access the area or negotiate corners. Staff commented that engineers will be looking at truck radius to make sure they have proper turning angles.

As for the larger project, Mayor Nick Proctor reminded it falls within established budget parameters set forth by Council. He said because of budget constraints, the City has only been doing road work when there is at least an 80% match or better. Proctor said the project qualifies and involves complete road restoration with water and sewer.

To stay in compliance with the state’s Drinking Water Revolving Fund program schedule, the project is expected to have an early January bid opening. Construction is expected to commence in the spring and be completed next fall.