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Historic US-16

Historic US-16On Page 1: Historical Overview
On Page 2: Year-by-Year History | Additional Information

This page mainly consists of a year-by-year history of US-16, including route realignments, business connections, bypasses and other changes to the route. While US-16 did not exist prior to 1926, included in this listing is the history of M-16, which US-16 supplanted in its entirety. (In essence, M-16 and US-16 could be considered to be the same highway, just with differently-shaped route markers.

Year-by-Year History

1918–19
9999x9999X
When the Michigan state trunkline system is assigned numbers and route markers are posted along the routes, the route from Detroit through Howell, Lansing, Portland, and Grand Rapids to Grand Haven is designated M-16. The specific routing is as follows (using present-day road names):
  • Grand River Ave from downtown Detroit northwesterly through Farmington, Novi, Brighton, Howell, Fowlerville, and Williamston to just east of Okemos.
  • Hamilton Rd through 'downtown' Okemos.
  • Grand River Ave from just west of Okemos into downtown East Lansing.
  • Michigan Ave from downtown East Lansing into downtown Lansing.
  • Capitol Ave northerly from Michigan Ave to Saginaw St in Lansing.
  • Saginaw St westerly from downtown Lansing, continuing on Saginaw Hwy in Eaton Co to Grand Ledge.
  • Clinton, Jefferson & Bridge Sts through Grand Ledge and northerly via Wright Rd into Clinton Co.
  • Grand River Ave northwesterly through Eagle to Jones Rd.
  • Jones Rd northerly from Grand River Ave, then westerly via Howe Rd & Peake Rd into Ionia Co.
  • Grand River Ave northwesterly again through Portland and westerly via Grand River Ave & Portland Rd to Sunfield Rd
  • Sunfield Rd northerly to Tuttle Rd; then westerly via Tuttle to Kelsey Rd.
  • Kelsey Rd northerly into Ionia, continuing into the city via Cleveland St to Main St.
  • Main St through downtown Ionia to Dexter St, then southerly via Dexter to Riverside Dr.
  • Riverside Dr westerly from Ionia, through Saranac and into Kent Co.
  • At Lowell, M-16 runs westerly via Grand River Dr, north on Division St and westerly on Main St.
  • Fulton St westerly into Ada.
  • Ada Dr westerly from Ada to Forest Hills Ave, then southerly on Forest Hills Ave to Cascade Rd.
  • Cascade Rd northwesterly into Grand Rapids to Robinson Rd.
  • Robinson Rd westerly to Lake St northwesterly to Fulton St and westerly into downtown Grand Rapids.
  • In Grand Rapids, M-16 turns northwesterly then northerly via Monroe Ave, then westerly via Leonard St to Remembrance Rd.
  • Remembrance Rd northwesterly into Ottawa Co, continuing northwesterly toward Marne via Ironwood Dr.
  • Through Marne and northwesterly toward Coopersville on Ironwood Dr (part of which is buried under present-day I-96).
  • Through Coopersville via Randall St, then northwesterly on State Rd to Cleveland Rd.
  • Cleveland Rd westerly through Nunica to Spring Lake and Ferrysburg.
  • South across the Grand River via present-day US-31 (then M-11 into Grand Haven, where M-16 has its western terminus.
1924 The routing in western Clinton and eastern Ionia Cos via Jones, Howe & Peake Rds is turned back to local control when M-16 is routed more directly via present-day Grand River Ave.
1925 To major realignments occur in 1925:
  • From downtown East Lansing, M-16 is rerouted westerly into Lansing via Grand River Ave, across the north side of Lansing then northwesterly, still via Grand River Ave, toward Eagle, meeting its former routing at Wright Rd north of Grand Ledge. The former route along Michigan Ave from downtown East Lansing into downtown Lansing becomes part of an extended M-39, Capitol Ave between Michigan Ave and Saginaw St is part of M-14/M-39, while Saginaw St/Hwy west from Lansing to Grand Ledge is also part of the extended M-39. From Grand Ledge to Grand River Ave north of Grand Ledge, is retained as a state trunkline, but doesn't seem to be given a designation for a few years. (It eventually is signed as M-100.) This rerouting was, of course, unpopular with Grand Ledge civic leaders, to the point that an aritcle in Michigan Roads and Pavements, noted "The progressive business men of Grand Ledge propose to meet this divergence of traffic by placing large signs in East Lansing, urging tourists to take M-39 at that point directly through the heart of Lansing to Grand Ledge and on to Grand Rapids."
  • Formerly turning northerly west of Portland to run into Ionia, then westerly through Saranac, Lowell and Ada toward Grand Rapids, M-16 is realigned onto a more direct alignment through Ionia Co, continuing westerly from Portland via Grand River Ave into Kent Co, then westerly via Cascade Rd, through Cascade, meeting its former route west of Ada. The former route from Grand River Ave west of Portland into Ionia is turned back to local control in 1928, while the former M-16 from Ionia westerly through Saranac, Lowell and Ada is marked as an extension of M-21.
1925 The initial designation for the proposed Detroit-Lansing-Grand Rapids-Grand Haven US Highway is US-18.
1926 After initially being tagged for the US-18 designation, all of M-16 in Michigan is given the new US-16 route designation from Grand Haven to Detroit. The M-16 route designation will forever disappear from the state, never to be re-used again!
1927
(May 15)
New! The new US Highway designations across the state of Michigan officially become effective today, with US-16 superceeding the entire route of M-16 in Michigan, as noted above.
1928
(July 11)
New! The Detroit City Council approves the request made jointly by Grover C Dillman, State Highway Dept engineer, and John W Reid, commissioner of public works, to erect route markers on the various streets in downtown Detroit carrying the new U.S. Highway routes. US-16 is to be marked along Grand River Ave from the western city limit southeasterly into downtown to Washington Blvd, then southerly via Washington Blvd to US-112/Michigan Ave, easterly along Michigan Ave to the terminus of US-16 at City Hall.
1930
(June 6)—
1933
Updated In late 1933, the southern bypass of the City of Farmington is completed via present-day Freedom Rd. The existing route of US-16 through Farmington is retained as a state trunkline. This bypass, sometimes referred to as the "Farmington Cutoff" or the "Grand River Cutoff," is officially approved as a state trunkline highway route on June 6, 1930, but construction takes until 1932 and paving is completed in 1933. The cut-off serves as a two-way bypass around Farmington while existing mainline US-16 continues to traverse the center of the city.
1934 While not incorporated into the route of US-16, a direct new state trunkline highway is constructed and opened to traffic as M-126. This new highway alignment, following present-day Apple Dr from Nunica to Fruitport, 3rd St through Fruitport and Airline Hwy from Fruitport into Muskegon. For the time being, US-16 still continues westerly from Nunica into Grand Haven.
1936 A slight realignment in eastern Grand Rapids when US-16 is transferred from Robinson Rd and Lake Dr to continue northwesterly via Cascade Rd to E Fulton St, then westerly via Fulton into downtown Grand Rapids. The former route is turned back to local control.
1936 New! The US-16A "Farmington Cutoff" bypass around the city of Farmington in Oakland Co is coverted to one-way service for eastbound traffic only. In the first four years of the existence of the bypass, the cutoff saw 40 deaths. After converting to one-way, the death toll on the bypass for 1937 drops to just one fatality. The existing mainline US-16 route through downtown Farmington continues to serve both directions of traffic.
1937 New! The one-way experiment on the US-16A "Farmington Cutoff" bypass around the city of Farmington in Oakland Co is converted back to two-way traffic to accommodate construction on a portion of mainline US-16/Grand River Ave west of downtown Farmington. Plans are to reinstitute one-way eastbound-only traffic on the bypass again once the Grand River Ave work is completed, with plans to improve the bypass route and eventually allow two-way traffic (again) when safety upgrades have been made.
1940
(May 31)
New! Michigan State Highway Commissioner Murray D. Van Wagoner petitons the American Association of State Highway Officials (AASHO, today's AASHTO) to approve rerouting US-16 from its Nunica-to-Grand Haven alignment to take over the route of M-126 (the "Airline Highway") from Nuncia through Fruitport to Muskegon. The M-104 designation is approved as the replacement for the portion of exisitng US-16 between Nunica and US-31 at Ferrysburg.
1940 US-16 is finally rerouted onto its "classic" routing when all of M-126 from Nunica through Fruitport into Muskegon Heights, where it is paired with US-31A to run northerly via Peck St into downtown Muskegon, where it ends. The former route of US-16 westerly from Nunica to Ferrysburg is redesignated as M-104.
1941–42 One realignment and one "bannered" route are created:
  • In Muskegon, US-16 is rerouted to follow M-46/Houston Ave west from BUS US-31/Peck St to 6th St, then northerly to Western Ave, jogging east via Western Ave to Mart St, then northerly on Mart St to the carferry docks. From here, US-16 followed the railroad carferry line to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Previously, motorists had to "find their way" from the western end of US-16 in Michigan to the carferry docks for the continuation across Lake Michigan to Wisconsin.
  • What had been designated M-114 along the South Beltline (now 28th St) and West Beltline (now Wilson Ave) around Grand Rapids is redesignated as BYP US-16 ("Bypass US-16"). This route has the honor of being the very first US "Bypass" designation in Michigan.
c.1940–42 Updated The State Highway Dept commissions a new US-16A or ALT US-16 ("Alternate US-16") routing in the greater Grand Haven/Ferrysburg/Spring Lake area which, in part, follows the former route of US-16 into the area from the east. As officially commissioned, US-16A begins at jct US-16 & M-104 at Nunica and runs westerly along M-104 (formerly US-16) through Spring Lake to Ferrysburg, then turns northerly concurrently with US-31 into Muskegon Co, terminating at the jct of US-16 & US-31 southeast of Muskegon. It is unclear if US-16A (or ALT US-16) is ever posted in the field, however, as the designation is never included on any official state highway map and very little is known about the designation. This route designation has only been found on a few internal MSHD maps and only one commercial road map has been found with the route labeled, to date. The reason for the Alternate route may have been to placate Grand Haven/Ferrysburg/Spring Lake-area civic leaders after the loss of the US-16 mainline route. If the route was actually signed in the field—and it may never have been, due to wartime labor and materials shortages—it was decommissioned within a year or two.
1948
(Apr 21)
New! A new bridge carrying US-16/Grand River Ave over the Huron River and Kent Lake in western Oakland Co, ½ mile east of the Livingston Co line is completed and opened to traffic. The new $193,206 bridge, higher than the one it replaces, will permit the Huron-Clinton Parkway Authority (now the Huron-Clinton Metropark Authority) to raise the level of Kent Lake.
1953 In mid-1953, all of US-16 between the junctions of BYP US-16 in the Greater Grand Rapids area is redesignated as a new BUS US-16 routing. Simultaneously, BYP US-16 is replaced by the routing of US-16 in its entirety. That is a net loss of one BYP US-16 route and a net gain of one BUS US-16 route.
1956 During mid-1956, the portion of US-16/Grand River Ave in Lansing from jct M-78/Saginaw St on the east side of town to jct US-27/Larch St north of downtown becomes one-way for westbound traffic only and gains the M-78 (westbound) as well. The eastbound US-16 routing now turns south along US-27/Larch St to M-78/Saginaw St, then runs easterly via Saginaw St back to Grand River Ave.
1957
(Aug 1,
Dec 13 )
UpdatedThe first four miles of the 22-mile long, $19-million "Brighton–Farmington Expressway" is completed from US-23 on the east side of Brighton to the Livington/Oakland Co line and opens to traffic on Aug 1. The new freeway, the remainder of which is opened to traffic on Dec 13, is mostly built on new alignment, although from the Livingston/Oakland Co line to east of Kent Lake Rd the new freeway is built directly atop a portion of Grand River Ave, which is now discontinuous between Kensington Rd and Kent Lake Rd. Also, while it was previously assumed the original 1933 "Farmington Bypass" had been converted into the new freeway, new sources show the existing bypass is largely maintained (as Freedom Rd) and the new freeway is built immediately south of the old bypass. The former bypass route is severed, however, at Halsted Rd by the new freeway while the remainder becomes a northerly frontage road for the freeway. The former route of US-16 along Grand River Ave from US-23 at Brighton to the new interchange west of Farmington (at Halsted Rd) is turned back to local control, as is the former "Farmington Bypass" route via present-day Freedom Rd. Grand River Ave through downtown Farmington is retained as a state trunkline and is designated BUS US-16.
1957
(Aug 20)
Updated The eastbound lanes of the US-16 "Farmington Bypass" are completed and opened to traffic from Grand River Ave west of Farmington back to Grand River Ave southeast of the city. These first two lanes of the eventual four-lane freeway effectively replace the eastbound-only US-16 "Farmington Cut-off" constructed in the early 1930s. (Westbound US-16 traffic has been forced to travel through downtown Farmington for more than two decades.) The westbound lanes of the "Farmington Bypass" on the US-16 Brighton-Farmington Expwy are still under construction, however.
1957
(Sept 16)
New! The 17.59 miles of the Brighton–Farmington Expwy from jct US-16 & BUS US-16 at Grand River Ave between Middlebelt & Merriman Rds southeast of Farmington in Oakland Co west-northwesterly to the Oakland/Livingston Co line west of New Hudson are officially determined as a state trunkline highway route. The only portion of this segment open to traffic are the eastbound lanes of the "Farmington Cut-Off," while the remainder is under construction. (Interestingly, the four-line long Livingston Co portion of the Brighton–Farmington Expwy was opened six weeks prior, but will not be officially determined as a state trunkline for five years!)
1957
(Dec 13)
Updated The remainder of the 22-mile long US-16/Brighton-Farmington Expwy is completed and opened to traffic with ribbon-cutting ceremonies at Brighton, Wixom, Novi and Farmington. The segment from US-23 east of Brighton to the Livingston/Oakland Co line and the "Farmington Bypass" portion had opened to traffic earlier in the year. Steel shortages due to the 1956 steelworkers strike held up completion of over- and underpasses at Wixom Rd and the C&O Railway overpass at Novi. While the new freeway is signed as part of US-16, the former route along Grand River Ave from Brighton to Farmington (with a physical gap at the Huron River at Kent Lake) is retained as an unsigned state trunkline highway route for the time being.
1957
(Dec 24–30)
UpdatedApproximately 8½ miles of US-16 freeway are completed and opened to traffic on Dec 24 from the west side of Coopersville (present-day Exit 16) to just east of Marne (present-day Exit 24) in Ottawa Co, bypassing Coopersville to the south and Marne to the north. From the west end of the new freeway segment west of Coopersville to 40th Ave just east of Coopersville, the former route along Randall St and Ironwood Dr is turned back to local control six days later on Dec 30, as is the former route bypassing Marne to the south via Berlin Fair Dr and Hayes St. (From 40th Ave east of Coopersville to just west of Marne, the new freeway consumes the original route of US-16.)
1958
(Jan 20)
Updated An 8½-mile long stretch of US-16 freeway is completed and opened to traffic between existing US-16/Grand River Ave southeast of downtown Portland (at present-day Exit 77) , continuing southeasterly and east-southeasterly to the north of the former route past Eagle to M-100 north of Grand Ledge (present-day Exit 86), where the new freeway merges back into exisitng US-16 via a temporary connector roadway. No ribbon-cutting ceremonies are held to mark the opening of the $3.88-million highway, which is opened to traffic six months early.
1958
(Jan 24)
New! The 5.85-mile segment of the US-16 freeway in southwestern Clinton Co from existing US-16/Grand River Ave just east of M-100 north of Grand Ledge, northwesterly through Eagle to the Ionia Co line is officially determined as a state trunkline highway route, four days after opening to traffic. At the same time, the former route of US-16 along Grand River Ave from just east of M-100 to the Clinton/Ionia Co line is turned back to county control.
1958
(Dec 18,
11:00 am)
Updated An additional 20 mile segment of the US-16 freeway across much of Ionia Co is completed and opened to traffic (more then eight months ahead of schedule) from a temporary ramp constructed at Hastings Rd northwest of Clarksville to Portland Rd (present-day Exit 73) west of Portland. A four-mile gap in the freeway between Kent St and Grand River Ave remains, however, on the south side of Portland. Through US-16 traffic is routed from Portland Rd easterly via Grand River Ave (the former route of US-16) back to the freeway southeast of town. The former route of US-16 along Grand River Ave from Hastings Rd to downtown Portland remains an unsigned state trunkline route for the time being.
1959 A massive new highway project in the Muskegon area creates a 4–6 lane, partially-controlled access "loop route" through the city from the junction of US-16 and the new US-31 bypass southeast of town to north side of the city. This new highway, christened "Seaway Dr," is assigned the US-16 and BUS US-31 route designations. US-16 now enters Muskegon via the new Seaway Dr from the south, then turns northeasterly via Muskegon Ave (wbd) and Webster Ave (ebd) to Sixth St, where US-16 departs US-31 and joins with M-46 running northerly via Sixth St, jogging easterly on Western Ave for a few hundred feet, then northerly again via Mart St to the carferry dock for the over-water journey to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (The Sixth-Western-Mart routing is not new—it has been part of US-16 since 1941–42.) The former route of US-16 along Airline Hwy (Getty Ave to Peck St), northerly via Peck St, southwesterly via Houston St and northerly one block via Sixth St (Houston St to Muskegon Ave) is turned back to local control.
1959
(June)
Updated The four-mile gap in the US-16 freeway around the south side of Portland is completed and opened to traffic from Portland Rd west of the city (present-day Exit 73) to Grand River Ave southeast of town (present-day Exit 77). The former route of US-16 along Grand River Ave through downtown Portland remains an unsigned state trunkline route for the time being.
1959
(Nov 4)
New! After being severed by the Brighton-Farmington Expwy two years earlier, a new Grand River Ave bridge spanning the Huron River at the outlet of Kent Lake in western Oakland Co is completed and opened to traffic. The original alignment of Grand River Ave at the Huron River was subsumed into the alignment of the new freeway in 1957, thereby causing Grand River Ave to be discontinuous between Livington and Oakland Cos. After complaints from both local residents and business owners, a new alignment for Grand River is constructed immediately to the south of the freeway alignment.
1959
(Nov 13)
Updated The US-16 freeway is extended westerly from Hastings Rd in western Ionia Co into Kent Co, to a temporarily ending at Whitneyville Ave southeast of Cascade. The temporary connection at Hastings Rd is removed when the freeway to the west is opened to traffic. The former routeof US-16 along Grand River Ave (Ionia Co) and Cascade Rd (Kent Co) has its US-16 route markers removed, but remains an unsigned state trunkline—with the exception of the portion between Segwun Ave and Alden Nash Ave near Alto, which becomes part of M-91—for the time being.
1959 (Fall) I-96I-196US-16Updated The first Interstate route markers begin appearing along the several freeway segments of US-16. The new I-196 is posted along the US-16 freeway from Coopersville to Marne, while new I-96 signs are erected along the US-16 freeway from southeast of Cascade to east of Eagle and from Brighton to Farmington.
1960
(Mar 7)
I-96US-16New! The I-96/US-16 freeway through Ionia Co from the Kent Co line easterly to the Clinton Co line is officially determined as a state trunkline highway route, even though it opened to traffic in stages during 1958 and 1959. Simultaneously, the entire length of the former US-16 route along Grand River Ave in Ionia Co from the Kent Co line to the Clinton Co line is turned back to county control (and municipal control through Portland), approximately 15 months after much of it was bypassed by the new US-16 freeway.
1961
(Jan 22)
New! The 15.45-mile long segment of the I-96/US-16 freeway in southeast Kent Co from the Ionia Co line westerly then northwesterly past Cascade to existing BUS US-16/BUS M-50 along Cascade Rd east of Grand Rapids is officially determined as a state trunkline highway, although it will not open to traffic for another eight months. Simultaneously, the 6.6-mile long segment of existing US-16/M-50 (southeast to 28th St) and BUS US-16/BUS M-50 (northwest of 28th St) along Cascade Rd as well as the 1.8-mile long portion of US-16/M-50 along 28th St between Cascade Rd and the new freeway are both turned back to local control. At the same time, an additional 16.04 miles of I-96/US-16 and I-196/US-16 freeway (all part of the "Detroit–Muskegon Freeway") in Kent Co from the end of the previous segment northwesterly to the proposed US-16 & I-196 interchange, then northerly and westerly via future I-196 (present-day I-96) bypassing Grand Rapids and Walker and then into Ottawa Co to existing US-16/Ironwood Dr is also determined as a state trunkline highway route.
1961 The route of BUS US-16 via Grand River Ave through Farmington is redesignated as BL I-96 in its entirety.
1961
(Aug 30)
I-96US-16Updated An additional eight miles of I-96/US-16 freeway are completed beginning at the temporary connector at Whitneyville Ave southeast of Cascade in central Kent Co and continuing northwesterly toward Grand Rapids. The first four miles of the new freeway from the former Whitneyville Ave connector (which is removed) to the former route of US-16/M-50 on 28th St west of Cascade is designated as part of I-96/US-16. The remaining three miles from 28th St northwesterly to Cascade Rd is designated as BUS US-16/BUS M-50, a designation which had formerly run along Cascade Rd from 28th St in Cascade northwesterly toward Grand Rapids. Until the remainder of the Detroit-Muskegon Frwy (I-96/US-16 and I-196/US-16) around Grand Rapids is completed, through US-16 traffic will contiue to be directed around Grand Rapids via the "South Beltline" (28th St) and "West Beltline (Wilson Ave), although the future route number for this route has already been chosen for when the freeway is complete: M-11. The former route of US-16/M-50 along Cascade Rd between Whitneyville Rd and 28th St and along 28th St from Cascade Rd to the new freeway as well as the former BUS US-16/BUS M-50 following Cascade Rd from 28th St to the new freeway (at present-day Exit 39) both remain state trunkline routes, albeit unsigned ones for the time being.
1961
(Sept 18)
I-196US-16New! The five-mile long segment of the I-196/US-16 freeway in northern Ottawa Co from Nunica to Coopersville is partially completed and partially opened to traffic. Beginning at 112th Ave (present-day Exit 10) at Nunica, the eastbound lanes of the new I-196/US-16 freeway are opened for five miles to just west of Coopersville. Two-way traffic is maintained on the eastbound lanes while the westbound lanes are completed.
1961
(Nov 15–25)
I-196US-16Updated The I-196/US-16 freeway from US-31 in Norton Shores southeasterly to the western end of the "Nunica–Coopersville" freeway segment (opened in Sept) is completed and opened to traffic on Nov 15. A ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of the $10 million segment are held at the Muskegon/Ottawa Co line between Fruitport and Nunica. Ten days later on Nov 25, this new segment of freeway is officially added to the state trunkline system. Simultaneously, the 15.32 miles of former US-16 along State Rd, Cleveland St, Apple Ave, 3rd Ave (in Fruitport), and Airline Hwy between Coopersville and US-31 is turned back to county and municipal control.
1961
(Nov 21)
I-96I-196US-16New! A seven-mile long segment of I-96/US-16 and I-196/US-16 freeway is completed and opened to traffic on the northeast side of Greater Grand Rapids. Beginning at BUS US-131/Plainfield Ave (present-day Exit 33), I-196/US-16 continues eastelry then southerly for four miles to the future location of the I-96/M-21 freeway interchange as it connects into downtown Grand Rapids. From that location—just west of the US-131/East Beltline Ave interchange (present-day Exit 38)—southeasterly to the end of the existing freeway at Cascade Rd, the new freeway is signed as I-96/US-16. (At this time, I-96 is planned to head westerly through downtown Grand Rapids, then southwesterly to Holland and south to Benton Harbor. I-196, on the other hand, is the spur route from Grand Rapids northwesterly to Muskegon.) The route of BUS US-16 through downtown Grand Rapids is left intact from the new I-96/US-16 freeway (at present-day Exit 40A-B) westerly and northwesterly through Grand Rapids to Walker. This segment of freeway cost $7.5 million to construct and initially opens to "local traffic only" until the westerly extension of the freeway across the Grand River is completed and opened to traffic in one month.
1961
(Dec 21)
I-96US-16Updated Originally scheduled to be completed in the fall of 1962, the $5.8-million, 3.4-mile long "Brighton Bypass" segment of the I-96/US-16 freeway is completed and opened to traffic from just east of US-23 east of Brighton to the existing route of US-16 along Grand River Ave on the north side of town (present-day Exit 145). This includes traversing the $2-million, 171-acre interchange with the future US-23 freeway, proclaimed as the "world's largest interchange" (in terms of acres covered) by the State Highway Dept, although US-23 itself will not be open through the new interchange for another nine months. The former route of US-16 through Brighton remains as an unsigned state trunkline route for now.
1961
(Dec 22)
I-196US-16Updated Approximately 11 miles of new I-196/US-16 freeway (future I-96) is completed from the eastern end of the existing freeway segment at Marne, across the north side of Walker, across the Grand River and into Grand Rapids to the western end of the existing freeway segment at BUS US-131/Plainfield Ave. This fills the final gap in the overall Muskegon–Lansing freeway. The former route of US-16 from present-day Exit 24 near Marne southerly to Grandville and easterly through Wyoming to the new I-96/US-16 freeway (at present-day Exit 43) is redesignated as M-11. The 11-mile freeway cost $9.4 million to construct and opens one year ahead of schedule, in part because of the State Highway Dept's coordination with the contractor constructing the massive US-131 freeway interchange just west of the Grand River. The Dept requested the contractor complete the east-west portion of the interchange to allow Lansing-to-Muskegon through traffic to use the completed freeway early. Also on this same day, the remainder of the Detroit–Muskegon freeway (I-96 and I-196) around the city of Grand Rapids, 14.97 miles total, is officially assumed into the state trunkline highway system
1961
(Dec 22)
I-96US-16Updated The 15.45 miles of the Detroit-Muskegon Frwy from the Ionia/Kent Co line westerly to Cascade Rd east of East Grand Rapids (designated as I-96/US-16 from the Ionia Co line to M-50/M-91/Alden Nash Ave, I-96/US-16/M-50 from Alden Nash Ave to 28th St, and as BUS US-16/BUS M-50 from 28th St to Cascade Rd) is officially determined as a state trunkline route, even though portions have been open since 1959 and 1960. Simultaneously, the 6.6 miles of Cascade Rd in central Kent Co (formerly designated US-16/M-50 from Whitneyville Ave to 28th St and as BUS US-16/BUS M-50 from 28th St to the new freeway opened to traffic in 1960) and the 1.8 miles of 28th St (formerly designated US-16/M-50) from Cascade Rd to the new freeway interchange (present-day Exit 43) is turned back to county control, even though the freeway replacing these routes has been open for well over a year.
1962
(July 20)
New! Four months prior to opening to traffic, the 5.1 miles of I-96/US-16 freeway from the Eaton/Clinton Co line northwest of Lansing northwesterly to M-100/Wright Rd north of Grand Ledge is officially determined as a state trunkline highway route. Simultaneously, the 3.45-mile segment of (soon-to-be former) US-16 along Grand River Ave from the new I-96/US-16 freeway westerly to M-100/Wright Rd is turned back to county control.
1962
(Nov 7)
I-96US-16New! As work progresses on the entire 58½ miles of I-96/US-16 freeway from west of Lansing to Brighton which will complete the Detroit–Muskegon freeway, the 4 miles of the new route from the Lake Chemung area (preset-day Exit 141) halfway between Howell and Brighton southeasterly to existing US-16/Grand River Ave (present-day Exit 145) is completed and opened to traffic more than a month ahead of the remainder of the new I-96 route west past Lansing to M-100. Wbd I-96 traffic is shunted off the new freeway onto the existing US-16/Grand River Ave at Lake Chemung for the time being. The former route of US-16 along Grand River between Lake Chemung and Brighton is retained as an unsigned state trunkline route for the time being.
1962
(Nov 10)
Updated The former route of US-16 through downtown Brighton from US-23 east of the city to I-96 north of town is turned back to local control. This segment of US-16 was bypassed by the I-96 freeway in December 1961.
1962
(Dec 12)
I-96Updated The final 54½ miles of I-96 freeway from immediately east of M-100 north of Grand Ledge easterly past Lansing and Howell to the Lake Chemung area are completed and opened to traffic. Several ribbon-cutting ceremonies are held—Howell at 9am, Fowlerville at 9:30am, Webberville at 10am, Williamston at 10:30am, and southwest of Lansing at the US-27/M-78 cloverleaf at 11am—followed by a private luncheon at the Lansing Civic Center. State Highway Commissioner John C. Mackie is the featured speaker at each ceremony and event. Governor Swainson proclaims December 12, 1962 as "Interstate 96 Day" in Michigan as well. Simultaneously, all of US-16 in the state is "decommissioned" and all US-16 route markers are taken down, ending a 36-year run for the US-16 route designation in Michigan. The final segments of US-16 are designated thusly:
  • BS I-196 – from the end of Mart St (the former 'eastern entrance' of US-16 at the carferry docks) to jct US-31 & I-196 southeast of Muskegon.
  • I-196 – from jct US-31 & I-196 southeast of Muskegon to Mile 37 in Grand Rapids, just west of the East Beltline Ave interchange.
  • I-96 – from Mile 37 at Grand Rapids to just east of M-100 north of Grand Ledge.
  • Local road – from just east of M-100 to I-96 at present-day Exit 90.
  • BL I-96 – from I-96 at present-day Exit 90 northwest of Lansing to US-27/Cedar-Larch Sts in Lansing, north of downtown.
  • Local street – in Lansing from US-27/Cedar-Larch Sts to Oakland St.
  • M-43 – from cnr Grand River Ave & Oakland St in northeast Lansing to jct M-52 just west of Webberville.
  • Local road – from M-52 west of Webberville to M-59 northwest of Howell.
  • BL I-96 – through Howell, from M-59 northwest of town to the "Lake Chemung" exit on I-96 (present-day Exit 141).
  • Local road – from the Lake Chemung area to present-day Exit 145 on the north side of Brighton.
  • I-96 – from Grand River Ave on the north side of Brighton to Grand River Ave on the east side of Farmington.
  • BS I-96 – from the end of the I-96 freeway on the east side of Farmington to US-12/Michigan Ave in downtown Detroit.

 

Additional Information

 
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