Michigan Highways: Since 1997.

Michigan Highways website header graphic
Back to Previous Route:
M-58
M-59 Route Marker On to Next Route:
M-60
Western Terminus:    I-96 at Exit 133 west of Howell
Eastern Terminus:    I-94 at Exit 240 northeast of Mount Clemens, on the Chesterfield/Harrison Twp line.
Length: Updated 60.678 miles
Maps: Route Map of M-59
Notes: Updated Over the years, M-59 has been transformed from a sleepy little two-lane road connecting Howell, Pontiac and Mount Clemens into a major urban thoroughfare and heavily-used commuter route through the northern and northwestern Detroit suburbs. Today, all but 9.1 miles of this highway—from Michigan Ave at Howell to US-23 at Hartland—have been converted into a multilane highway, a divided highway or urban freeway. Planning to convert the final 9.1 miles in Livingston Co to multilane or divided highway has been underway for years and construction may begin in the next several years.
  In the late-1990s, M-59 throughout Macomb Co underwent a major transformation. This portion of the route had been long-identified as a congested two-lane highway which had been surrounded by suburban development and urban sprawl. The first segment of the refurbished highway opened from Utica Park Blvd east of Utica to Romeo Plank Rd in c.1995. The next section was the portion from Van Dyke Ave in downtown Utica east to Utica Park Blvd, which was completed in 1997. Both of these sections of divided, six- to eight-lane highway replaced older sections of two- to four-lane undivided highway.
  In the summer of 1998, a new 1½-mile long extension of the M-59 freeway was opened to traffic from west of Mound Rd to the traffic light at Van Dyke Ave in downtown Utica. The new six-lane depressed freeway segment replaces the old divided four-lane surface highway.
  Then in November 1998, the final four miles of refurbished highway from Romeo Plank Rd to I-94 were opened to traffic. As with the first two segments, this final link converted a dangerous and congested two-lane roadway to a six-lane divided highway. In conjunction with the reconstruction, M-59 was rerouted off of Gratiot Ave and 23 Mile Rd and, instead, extended easterly from M-3/Gratiot Ave for 1/2 mile to end directly at I-94 at Exit 240.
  When the final segment of the upgraded M-59 in Macomb Co was completed through to I-94 in late-1998, MDOT also upgraded the portion of William P Rosso Hwy extending easterly from I-94 for approximately 3/4 mile to match the cross-section of M-59 to the west. While the state trunkline route terminates at the northbound I-94 on-ramp, contractors or the Macomb Co Road Commission (under contract) installed "M-59 ENDS" route marker assemblies 3/4 mile east of I-94. Data from the State of Michigan confirms that William P Rosso Hwy from I-94 easterly is a county primary road, meaning these "M-59 ENDS" route markers have been erected in the wrong location.
  New! In "State Trunkline Needs, 1960–1980," a set of maps prepared by the State Highway Dept's Office of Planning, Programming Division in 1960 showing possible additions, upgrades and improvements to the state trunkline system over the ensuing twenty years, MSHD staff recommended some changes to M-59 during that timeframe, including:
  • A westerly extension of the route from US-16/Grand River Ave to a new interchange with the proposed I-96 freeway west of Howell. This proposal was implemented exactly as proposed two years after the plans were published.
  • Implementing two sets of one-way pairs both west and east of downtown Pontiac. On the west, M-59 was planned to split into a one-way pair with Eastbound M-59 continuing to enter the City of Pontiac via Highland Rd-Huron St, while Westbound M-59 would have used State St and Elizabeth Lake Rd to head west out of downtown. East of downtown, Eastbound M-59 would have continued to use Auburn Ave to Opdyke Rd, while Westbound M-59 would have departed Auburn Ave just west of Opdyke, curved northerly then back westerly to travel along Pike St into downtown Pontiac. These two one-way pair routings were never implemented.
  • An M-59 freeway was proposed to link Pontiac with I-94 north of Mount Clemens. From the intersection of Auburn Ave & Opdyke Rd on the eastern edge of Pontiac, the M-59 freeway was proposed to run northeasterly to an interchange with the proposed I-75 (at its current location), with the freeway proceeding easterly just to the south of Hamlin Rd with interchanges at Adams Rd, Crooks Rd and M-150/Rochester Rd. There, the freeway would turn southeasterly crossing existing M-59 (Auburn Ave) at John R Rd to an interchange at Dequindre Rd where it meets South Blvd. In Macomb Co, the proposed M-59 freeway would continue easterly roughly along the line of Utica Rd to an interchange with Mound Rd near Auburn Rd before curving northerly to cross the Clinton River upstream of downtown Utica, then curving back easterly to run roughly along the line of 21 Mile Rd—with interchanges at Van Dyke Ave and the proposed M-53 freeway—before swinging slightly to the north at Tilch Rd then back easterly, now running easterly approximately 1/3-mile north of 21 Mile Rd. Interchanges were proposed at Romeo Plank Rd, North Rd (along which an extended M-97 would have run to a new terminus at the M-59 freeway), and US-25/Gratiot Ave, before terminating at an interchange with I-94 just north of 21 Mile Rd. Much of this proposal between Pontiac and Utica eventually came to fruition, albeit with a few tweaks made along the way, however the portion from Mound Rd west of Utica easterly to the Mount Clemens area was never implemented.
History: 1915 (Oct 28) New! – The first 9.3 miles of state trunkline highway designated as T.L. 59 is determined (assumed into the system) starting at the eastern city limit of Pontiac at East Blvd (modern-day Martin Luther King Jr Blvd) and proceeding easterly via Auburn Rd through Pontiac and Avon Twps to a terminus at Dequindre Rd on the Oakland/Macomb Co line.
  1916 (Jan 29) New! – T.L. 59 is extended easterly into Macomb Co when an additional 11.5 miles of new state trunkline route is determined from Dequindre Rd on the Oakland/Macomb Co line, running easterly via Auburn Rd into downtow Utica, continuing to the east along Hall Rd from Utica to Romeo Plank Rd, then southerly for approximately one mile along Romeo Plank before turning southeasterly via Cass Ave to a terminus at the western limits of the City of Mount Clemens at the bridge spanning the Middle Branch of the Clinton River.
  1919 (July 1) New! – T.L. 59 is signed in the field as M-59 as all state trunkline highways in Michigan are signed with route markers. A gap in the route within the City of Pontiac is signed as M-59 but is not officially under state jurisdiction.
  1917 (July 7) New! – M-59 is extended for 0.5 mile in Mount Clemens from the Middle Branch of the Clinton River bridge easterly via Cass Ave to a new terminus at the railroad crossing between Mary St and Floral Ave when the additional trunkline mileage is assumed into the system.
  1919 (July 13) New! – A 1.7-mile segment of W Huron St in the City of Pontiac from the Williams St-State St intersection westerly to Telegraph Rd (future M-58, later US-10, and present-day US-24) is determined as a state trunkline highway, although this route would not show up on official highway maps for over a decade and a half—the reasons for which are not clear.
  1930 (June 30) New! – The portion of Hall Rd between North Ave and US-25/Gratiot Ave north of Mount Clemens in Macomb Co is assumed into the state trunkline system as part of a proposed western bypass of Mount Clemens for US-25, not as part of M-59 originally.
  1931New! – Act 131 of 1931—the Dykstra Act—is passed allowing the State Highway Dept to take over control of state highways running into and through incorporated cities, thereby officially incorporating them as state trunkline highways. The protion of signed M-59 routing along Auburn Ave in the City of Pontiac from East Blvd on the east to US-10/Saginaw St in downtown is assumed into the system. Interestingly, the portion of determined trunkline along Huron St from Williams St-State St west of downtown Pontiac westerly to M-58/Telegraph Rd is not connected to US-10 downtown under this act and it seems to remain an unsigned route for the time being.
  1931 (Aug 31) Updated – The 3.0 miles of Hall Rd in Macomb Co from Romeo Plank Rd northwest of Mount Clemens easterly to North Ave is assumed into the state trunkline system as part of a relocation of M-59. From North Ave easterly to US-25/Gratiot Ave, the M-59 designation is continued along a trunkline routing determined the previous year as part of a proposed US-25 bypass of Mount Clemens. The former route of M-59 along Romeo Plank Rd and Cass Ave is turned back to local control.
  1934–37 Updated – A major western extension of M-59 takes the route from downtown Pontiac westerly to US-23 south of Hartland. The individual trunkline determinations and highway segment completions occur over a few years:
  • 1934 (Oct 11) New! – The first segment of the Pontiac-to-Hartland section of M-59 officially determined as a state trunkline highway is the 0.59 mile segment along State St beginning at the intersection of W Huron St & Williams St west of downtown Pontiac and continuing northwesterly to the intersection of Johnson St & Elizabeth Lake Rd.
  • 1934 (Dec 12) New! – The second segment of the Pontiac-to-Hartland section of M-59 officially determined as a state trunkline highway is the 5.21 miles running along Highland Rd in central Oakland Co from Airport Rd westerly to western intersection of Highland Rd & Pontiac Lake Rd. It is unlikely this segment is signed as M-59 in the field until additional segments to the east are constructed and/or brought into the trunkline system.
  • 1935 (Jan 7) New! – The third segment of the western M-59 extension to be determined as a state trunkline highway is 4.4 miles long and begins at M-58/Telegraph Rd, running westerly via Pontiac Lake Rd to the eastern intersection of Pontiac Lake & Highland Rds, then continuing to the west along Highland Rd to beginning of the first segment (assumed the month before) at Airport Rd, although likely unsigned.
  • 1935 (Jan 7) New! – The fourth segment of the western M-59 extension to be determined, on the same day as the above segment, runs for 5.7 miles along Highland Rd from Duck Lake Rd westerly to Tipsico Lake Rd on the Oakland/Livingston Co line. Sources seem to indicate this segment, like the others to this date, is not signed as part of M-59 in the field at this point and will not be paved and open to traffic until early 1937.
  • 1935 (Oct 22) New! – The fifth segment of the M-59 extension westerly from Pontiac to be determined is not immediately signed as part of the route of M-59, as it does not connect with the rest of the route at its western end. Beginning at M-58/Telegraph Rd (later US-10, now US-24) west of Pontiac, the 1.4-mile segment of newly-determined trunkline route travels westerly along Highland Rd to Elizabeth Lake Rd. There is a 1½-mile gap between Elizabeth Lake Rd and the segment of M-59 determined 9½ months earlier on January 7 along Pontiac Lake Rd and Highland Rd from Pontiac Lake westerly.
  • 1935 (Nov 4) New! – The sixth segment of the M-59 extension officially added to the state trunkline highway system begins at the western end of the first segment (from October 11, 1934) at the corner of State St, Johnson St & Elizabeth Lake Rd northwest of downtown Pontiac and continues westerly for 0.83 mile along Elizabeth Lake Rd to M-58/Telegraph Rd, where the third segment begins (from January 7, 1935). It is likely the route of M-59 is signed from Pontiac westerly to the intersection with Duck Lake Rd (even though the segment from the western intersection of Pontiac Lake Rd to Duck Lake Rd will not be officially assumed into the trunkline system for another three months) by the end of 1935.
  • 1936 (Feb 6) New! – The seventh segment of the Pontiac-to-Hartland section of M-59 officially determined as a state trunkline highway route is the 3.62 miles running along Highland Rd from the western intersection of Highland Rd & Pontiac Lake Rd westerly to Duck Lake Rd. This segment was paved and opened to traffic during 1935 and was likely signed as such upon opening, even though it was not officially made part of the system until now.
  • 1936 (Dec 9)New! – The eighth segment of the western M-59 extension to be determined actually works to replace a segment determined as a state trunkline highway route not quite two years earlier (the "third segment" noted above from January 7, 1935), connecting the "sixth segment" (determined on October 22, 1935) with that "third segment." This new segment of highway will not be paved and open to traffic until 1937 and will not be signed as part of M-59 until late 1938—the portion of the "third segment" heading easterly along Pontiac Lake Rd from Highland Rd to M-58/Telegraph Rd remains signed as M-59 for the time being.
  • Early 1937 New! The portion of M-59 from Duck Lake Rd in White Lake Twp westerly to the Livingston/Oakland Co line is fully paved and open to traffic.
  • 1937 (Dec 29) New! The ninth—and final—segment of the Pontiac-to-Hartland section of M-59 officially determined as a state trunkline highway route is the 3.7 miles of Highland Rd from Tipsico Lake Rd on the Oakland/Livingston Co line westerly to US-23 south of Hartland.
  1937 (Aug 30, Sept 27) New! – A 1.9-mile long state trunkline determination for M-59 is made through downtown Pontiac on August 30. Beginning at existing M-59 at Auburn Rd & East Blvd, the new route turns northerly along East Blvd to E Pike St, then runs westerly via Pike St through downtown to Williams St, then turns northerly to follow Williams St northerly to the beginning of the western portion of M-59 following State St northwesterly out of town. The former route along Auburn Rd from East Blvd westerly to US-10/Saginaw St is turned back to city control almost a month later on September 27. With the August 30th trunkline determination, M-59 now officially exists as a state trunkline highway continuously across the entire city of Pontiac.
  1938 (Dec 6) New! – The 2.7-mile segment of Pontiac Lake Rd from M-59/Highland Rd easterly to M-58/Telegraph Rd which was made redundant when Highland Rd between Elizabeth Lake Rd and Pontiac Lake Rd in Waterford Twp is transferred to county control. The route of M-59, which follows Elizabeth Lake Rd westerly from downtown Pontiac, now turns southerly to run concurrently with M-58/Telegraph Rd to W Huron St, then turns westerly and northwesterly via Huron St and Highland Rd back to the existing alignment at Pontiac Lake Rd. The portion of Huron St-Highland Rd from M-58/Telegraph Rd to Pontiac Lake Rd was officially assumed as a state trunkline highway (as the "fifth" and "eighth" segments from 1935–36) and paved during 1937, but is apparently not signed as part of M-59 until the Pontiac Lake Rd segment is turned back to local control.
  1939 (July 13) New! – The 1.425-mile segment of M-59 running along State St from Huron St westerly to Johnson St and via Elizabeth Lake Rd from Johnson St west to M-58/Telegraph Rd on the west side of Pontiac is turned back to city control. At this point, the trunkline routing along W Huron St from Williams St-State St westerly to M-58/Telegraph Rd that had been assumed into the state trunkline system in 1919 is officially made part of the route of M-59 and signed as such.
  1939 (July 13) Updated – Also on July 13th, a new alignment for M-29 in Macomb Co is assumed into the state trunkline system more closely following the Lake St Clair shoreline from New Baltimore southerly into St Clair Shores. The 4.4-mile segment of the former M-29 along 23 Mile Rd from the new alignment of M-29 at Jefferson Ave in New Baltimore westerly to US-25/Gratiot Ave north of Mount Clemens is redesignated as an easterly extension of M-59, with a new 3.4-mile long concurrency with US-25 along Gratiot Ave connecting the new segment back to the existing route.
  1940 (Nov 12) New! – The westernmost 2.5-mile segment of M-59 in Livingston Co south of Hartland is transferred to county control simultaneously with the determination of a new 2.31-mile segment on new alignment just to the north of the former route.
  1941 Updated – The final 2.5 miles of gravel-surfaced M-59 are paved, in eastern Livingston Co between US-23 and the Livingston/Oakland Co line. This is the newly-realigned segment from the prior year.
  1942–1946, 1949 (Nov 10) Updated – In 1939, M-29 in eastern Macomb Co was relocated onto an alignment following the Lake St Clair shoreline more closely, largely along the route of Jefferson Ave, from New Baltimore, southwesterly through Chesterfield and Harrison Twps and into St Clair Shores. In Harrison Twp, M-29 now passed west of Selfridge Field (now Selfridge Air National Guard Base) which was being rapidly expanded as the U.S. became involved in World War II. Soon after its designation past the airfield, M-29 was closed to traffic in c.1942 as the Army Air Base took over the alignment of Jefferson Ave through the installation. William P Rosso Hwy from Jefferson Ave westerly to jct US-25/Gratiot Ave & M-59/Hall Rd was paved and improved to become the rerouted M-29 along the north side of the base. M-29 then ran southwesterly with US-25 into Mount Clemens before reconnecting back with its former route in southern Harrison Twp. Then in 1946, a new easterly M-29 "bypass" of Mount Clemens along Snover Rd beginning at US-25/M-59/Gratiot Ave north of Hall Rd and continuing due southerly to Shook Rd southeast of Mount Clemens is completed and opened to traffic, although it would not be officially determined as a state trunkline highway until November 10, 1949—for reasons unclear at present. (The portion of Wiliam P Rosso Hwy between Jefferson Ave and Gratiot Ave is similarly determined on that day and the 2.8 miles of former M-29 from the base southerly to Shook Rd is also officially cancelled on that date.
       At this point, the M-29 designation is rerouted from New Baltimore to continue due westerly along its pre-1939 routing via 23 Mile Rd to US-25/Gratiot Ave, then southwesterly via Gratiot to the new Snover Rd bypass alignment, where it continued south to Shook Rd. M-59 was then rerouted to follow the 1939–1946 routing of M-29 easterly from US-25/Gratiot Ave via William P Rosso Hwy, then northeasterly along Jefferson Rd to its terminus at M-29/23 Mile Rd on the western edge of New Baltimore.
  1945 (Jun 26) Updated – An 11.5-mile long westerly extension for M-59 in Livingston Co is officially assumed into the state trunkline system on this date, although the new alignment portions of the highway are not yet built and the remainder of the route along exisitng county roads has not yet been improved to statt trunkline standards. From US-23 south of Hartland, M-59 now continues westerly via Highland Rd to Oak Grove Rd-Michigan Ave north of downtown Howell. From here, the officially determined route continues almost due westerly to US-16 northwest of Howell, while the signed route turns southerly via Michigan Ave as a "marked-and-maintained" route (not officially assumed into the trunkline system), to terminate at US-16/Grand River Ave in downtown Howell.
  1948 Updated – In late 1949, a short segment of M-59 is moved onto a newly-built alignment in central Livingston Co between Eager Rd and Latson Rd east of Howell. The former route along Eager and Bigelow Rds was never a part of the officially determined trunkline route (as "marked-and-maintained" only) and remain in county control.
  1950 (Nov 3) Updated – M-59 is realigned on the east side of Pontiac. Entering the city from the east via Auburn Ave, it formerly turned northerly from Auburn Ave via East Blvd, then westerly via E Pike St into downtown. The pre-1937 route of M-59 due westerly from East Blvd via Auburn Ave to BUS M-24/Parke St south of downtown is officially re-added to the state trunkline system. M-59 then runs northerly with BUS M-24/Parke St-Perry Ave back to the existing alignment of M-59 along Pike St. The former route along East Blvd between Auburn Rd and Pike St and along Pike St between East Blvd and BUS M-24/Perry Ave is turned back to city control.
  1956 Updated – Although not accompanied by an official state trunkline determination, the route of M-59 in downtown Pontiac is altered to no longer run along W Pike St from BUS M-24/Perry Ave westerly to Williams St. Westbound M-59 now continues northerly via BUS M-24/Perry St to Huron St, then turns westerly along Huron St to Williams St west of downtown. Eastbound M-59 continues southerly from the corner of WIlliams St & Pike St via Williams St to Orchard Lake Rd, then easterly via Orchard Lake Rd US-10/Saginaw St where it then continues easterly along Auburn Ave. The portion of Pike St no longer signed as M-59 remains an unsigned state trunkline route for another eight years. The sement of Williams St between Pike and Orchard Lake and Orchard Lake Rd between Williams and US-10/Saginaw St is not officially assumed as a state trunkline route, but is "Maintained but not Established."
  1957 Updated – In mid-1957, a northern "bypass" of the city of Howell is completed and M-59 is routed westerly from the cnr of Highland Rd & Michigan Ave-Oak Grove Rd along the new highway, terminating at US-16/Grand River Ave west of town. The new highway is built on new alignment, immediately adjacent to the original route of Highland Rd between Michigan Ave and Grand River. The former route into downtown Howell via Michigan Ave was never a part of the officially determined trunkline route (as "marked-and-maintained" only) and remains in city control.
  1959 Updated – The portion of eastbound M-59 along Williams St south from Huron St in Pontiac, then easterly via Orchard Lake St is relocated to run southerly from Huron St on Cass St (later Wide Track Dr West, now Woodward Ave southbound) to Orchard Lake. However, no official trunkline determinations with regard to these changes will occur for another four years. The disposition of what had been designated as Eastbound M-59 along Williams St:
  • Williams St from Huron St southerly to Pike St – remains an unsigned state trunkline route
  • Williams St from Pike St southerly to Orchard Lake Rd – remains a city street that had been "Maintained but Not Established" and will remain so for a few more years
  • Orchard Lake Rd from Williams St easterly to Cass Ave – had been designated in 1940 as part of the route of M-218 and remains an unsigned trunkline route for a few more years
  • Orchard Lake Rd from Cass Ave easterly to Saginaw St and Auburn Ave from Saginaw St easterly to Parke St (later Wide Track Dr East, now Woodward Ave northbound) – remains a city street that had been "Maintained but Not Established", but will be assumed into the state trunkline system in several years.
  1959 (Oct 1) Updated – In preparation for a future westerly highway upgrade, M-59 is realigned on the west side of Utica in Macomb Co onto a new divided highway segment due westerly from downtown to Mound Rd, then northerly via an upgraded (to divided highway) segment of Mound Rd back to Auburn Rd. The portion of Auburn Rd between downtown Utica and Mound Rd is turned back to county control on this date.
  1961 (Apr 6) Updated – The easternmost 6.7 miles of M-59 via William P Rosso Hwy and Jefferson Ave between the junctions of M-29 between Mount Clemens and New Baltimore is turned back to county control. M-59 now terminates at M-29/Snover Rd, just east of US-25/Gratiot Ave northeast of Mount Clemens.
  1962 (Dec 14)Updated – A further 0.98-mile westerly extension of M-59 west of Howell is officially assumed into the state trunkline highway system to coincide with the completion of the I-96 freeway bypassing Howell to the south. The new extension—signed concurrently with BL I-96—begins at the former western terminus of M-59 at Grand River Ave (formerly US-16, now BL I-96 southeast of M-59 only) and continues to an interchange with I-96.
  1963 (Dec 21) New! – A few segments of the former route of Eastbound M-59 in downtown Pontiac which have not been signed as part of the route for four years are officially decommissioned as state trunkline highways. Williams St from Pike St southerly to Orchard Lake Rd was only "Marked but Not Established" (city street never officially transferred to state control, but maintained as a part of a sate trunkline route) and is cancelled as a trunkline routing. Orchard Lake Rd from Williams St east to Cass St, originally determined as part of M-218, is transferred back to city control, with the portion of Orchard Lake St and Auburn Ave—also a "Marked but Not Established" routing—is likewise cancelled as a trunkline routing. At this point, Eastbound M-59 enters central Pontiac via Huron St, turns southerly via BUS US-10/Cass Ave, then easterly via Orchard Lake St-Auburn Ave, while Westbound M-59 enters the downtown area along Auburn Ave, turns northerly via BUS US-10/Perry Ave to Huron St, where it then turns westerly through the downtown core.
  1964 (Dec 18) Updated – The I-94 freeway is completed and opened to traffic in east-central Macomb Co. Between M-29/23 Mile Rd in Chesterfield Twp and Shook Rd southeast of Mount Clemens, M-29 is routed concurrently along the new freeway. (Technically, from just south of William P Rosso Hwy to Shook Rd, the new I-94 freeway has been constructed atop the existing route of M-29 completed in 1949.) With the completion of I-94, US-25 running along Gratiot Ave northerly from Mount Clemens is diverted easterly along 23 Mile Rd (formerly M-29) to the new freeway where it joins it to continue toward Port Huron. For reasons not clear, the M-59 route designation is removed from William P Rosso Hwy between US-25/Gratiot Ave and Snover Rd (now an I-94 Connector route) and redirected to continue northeasterly concurrently with US-25 along Gratiot Ave, then easterly with US-25 along 23 Mile Rd to a new terminus at I-94 there. William P Rosso Hwy between US-25/Gratiot Ave and I-94 becomes an unsigned state trunkline connector route.
  1964 (Nov 30) Updated – The Wide Track Drive loop (now the "Woodward Loop") is completed encircling downtown Pontiac with a 3-4 lane highway. Several official trunkline cancellations and determinations are made as part of this massive rerouting and realignment of the various highway routes through the center of the city:
  • The Wide Track Dr loop in its entirety is officially assumed into the state trunkline highway system, carrying the BL I-75 and BUS US-10 route designations in its entirety as well as the M-59 designation along most of the route. From Auburn Ave, Westbound M-59 heads northerly along BL I-75/BUS US-10/Wide Track Dr East, curving around to the west along BL I-75/BUS US-10/Wide Track Dr North before turning southeasterly via BL I-75/BUS US-10/Wide Track Dr West to Huron St where the M-59 route turns westerly toward Howell. Eastbound M-59 follows much the same route as it has since its last realignment in 1959: Huron Ave easterly to BL I-75/BUS US-10/Wide Track Dr West and then southbound on BL I-75/BUS US-10/Wide Track Dr West to Orchard Lake St.
  • The portion of Orchard Lake St and Auburn Ave from Wide Track Dr West (southbound), easterly to Wide Track Dr East (northbound) is officially transferred to state control as part of Eastbound M-59. Eastbound M-59 runs southerly concurrently with BL I-75/BUS US-10 along Wide Track Dr West to Orchard Lake St, then runs easterly via Orchard Lake to BL I-75/BUS US-10/Wide Track Dr East where it continues easterly via Auburn Ave.
  • The former route of Westbound M-59 along Parke St and Perry Ave is obliterated as a public street, in part, with the remainder transferred to city control from Auburn Ave northerly to Huron St.
  • The pre-1959 route of Eastbound M-59 along Williams St from Huron St southerly to Pike St and Pike St from Williams St easterly to Saginaw St is officially turned back to city control.
  • Interestingy, Huron St through the downtown Pontiac business district from Wide Track Dr West to Wide Track Dr East is also transferred to state control, but sources indicate it will not be signed as part of M-59 for about six more years, three years after the M-59 freeway on the east side of Pontiac is compled and opened to traffic!
  1966 (Oct 18) Updated – The first segment of the M-59 freeway opens from Opdyke Rd on the eastern limits of Pontiac easterly to Auburn Rd just west of Rochester Rd. The former route of M-59 along Auburn Rd from Opdyke Rd to the eastern end of the freeway is retained as an unsigned state trunkline, designated internally (to the State Highway Dept) as "OLD M-59" and is unsigned in the field. Opdyke Rd between Auburn Rd and the new freeway (which had been part of M-24 until the last day of 1963) is temporarily "marked-and-maintined" as part of the route of M-59 while the westerly extension of the freeway into Pontiac is being completed.
  1967 (Dec 12) Updated – The M-59 freeway is officially determined as a state trunkline highway westerly from Opdyke Rd to end just east of downtown Pontiac. From the end of the freeway, Westbound M-59 follows University Dr to BUS US-10/BL I-75/Wide Track Dr West and continues on its pre-1968 alignment. Eastbound M-59 now turns northerly from Auburn Ave along Wide Track Dr East (now Woodward Ave northbound) to E Huron St, then easterly to the new freeway. Auburn Ave from Wide Track Dr East (now Woodward Ave northbound) to Opdyke Rd is transferred to city control and Opdyke Rd from Auburn Ave northerly to M-59 remains a county road and is no longer "marked-and-maintained" as a state trunkline highway.
  1970 Updated – Eastbound M-59 is (finally) rerouted through the downtown Pontiac business district via Huron St, shortening the route and simplifying it for traffic. Auburn Ave between Wide Track Dr East (present-day Woodward Ave southbound) and Wide Track Dr West (present-day Woodward Ave northbound) had been turned back to local control on November 30, 1967, but seems to have remained signed as part of the route of eastbound M-59 until now.
  1972 (Dec 6) – The remainder of the M-59 freeway is completed from Auburn Rd in Avon Twp (now Rochester Hills) to Mound Rd west of Utica. The former routing of M-59 along Auburn Rd becomes an extension of the unsigned OLD M-59 trunkline route.
  1983 (June 20) New! – The former route of M-59 in western Macomb Co from M-59/Hall Rd west of Utica northerly to Auburn Rd, then northwesterly and westerly along Auburn Rd to the Macomb/Oakland Co line at Dequindre Rd is turned back to local control, 11 years after the freeway segment to the south that had effectively replaced this portion of the route was determined as a state trunkline routing. From 1972 until 1983, this route was known internally to MDOT as "OLD M-59."
  1984–86 – Two of three segments of M-59 are converted into a divided highway in Highland and White Lake Twps in Oakland Co in 1984, from east of Bogie Lake Rd to west of Ormond Rd and from west of Waterbury Rd to Tipsico Lake Rd on the Oakland/Livingston Co line. The last segment—from just east of US-23 at Hartland to the Oakland/Livingston Co line is completed by 1986. —Thanks for Mark Taylor for a correction/clarification!
  1995–97 – M-59 is completely reconstructed, in segments, from downtown Utica easterly to Romeo Plank Rd on the Macomb Twp/Clinton Twp line. The highway is now six- to eight-lanes divided. See Notes section above.
  1998 (June–Nov) – The M-59 freeway is extended easterly for 1.5 miles from west of Mound Rd to Van Dyke Ave in downtown Utica, including a new interchange for Mound Rd/Merrill Rd. The freeway is opened to traffic in June. Also, the final portion of the M-59 reconstruction is completed from Romeo Plank Rd to I-94 northeast of Mount Clemens in November. The former M-3/M-59 designation along Gratiot Ave and 23 Mile Rd in Chesterfield Twp becomes just M-3.
  2000 (Sept 11) – The portion of OLD M-59 along Auburn Rd within the City of Auburn Hills from Opdyke Rd on the west to Adams Rd on the east is turned back to local control. This segment of Auburn Rd had been bypassed by the M-59 freeway in 1966.
  2006–07 New! – As the freeway signage along the controlled-access portion of M-59 from Pontiac to Utica is replaced with new signs bearing the Clearview typeface, milemarkers and exit numbers make their debut on the route. The lowest exit number is Exit 38 at Martin Luther King Jr Blvd in Pontiac with the highest at Exit 50: Mound Rd/Merrill Rd west of downtown Utica.
Controlled Access: The sole portion of M-59 existing as a freeway runs from University Dr east of downtown Pontiac to Van Dyke Ave in downtown Utica. (13.2 miles)
  M-59 is a limited-access expressway from its western terminus at I-96 to its junction with BL I-96 (at cnr Highland Rd & Grand River Ave) northwest of Howell. (1.2 miles)
NHS: The entire route of M-59 is on the National Highway System.
Photographs:  
Weblinks:
Back to M-58 Route Listings Home On to M-60