Tree trimming work will be starting up next month ahead of a construction project along M-59 in Highland Township.

The Michigan Department of Transportation will be performing the work on M-59 between Milford Road and Tipsico Lake Road. The tree cutting will start before work really gets underway in April and construction is expected to continue through the end of October. The project is expected to be completed with single lane closures along M-59. The westbound condition is considered fair but the eastbound direction is poor. Crossovers will be temporarily closed with side roads detoured. M-DOT Senior Project Manager Jeff Pitt tells WHMI the reconstruction/resurfacing project involves all of the old, original M-59 concrete pavement that was covered up, which has been down there since the early 50’s or 60s’s. He says the work is much needed and they’ll be reconstructing the old eastbound direction, which was the original M-59 before it widened to a boulevard, and then resurface the westbound direction. Pitt says they’ll also be replacing all of the signs and guardrails, along with some culvert replacement so at the end of the project, everything will look brand new. In addition resurfacing and reconstruction, there will also be pathway and drainage upgrades.

The total project cost is $16.6 (m) million. It’s primarily federally funded but M-DOT will contribute a portion and then the township must match a portion of a pathway grant. Pitt says there are some existing pathways between Milford Road and Hickory Ridge Road but M-DOT is filling in the gaps and making it complete to Hickory Ridge. Pitt says in partnership, the township received a grant to complete the pathway from Hickory Ridge to Tipsico Lake Roads, which is the west county line. The upcoming tree clearing will be done in the M-DOT right-of-way where they are putting in the pathway.

There are no official detours associated with the project. Pitt says they don’t expect big delays but there will be some primarily through the pm peak time for traffic headed westbound and then the am peak heading eastbound. Pitt says crews will be maintaining one lane in each direction at all times and maintaining access to businesses and driveways along the corridor. He asks that people be careful during the project as they want both workers and the motoring public to get home safely. A project map is attached. Photo: Google Street View. (JM)