Michigan Highways
Home | Highway Listings | County Highways | Other Highways | In-Depth: News & Articles | About this Site


Highways 90 through 99

M-90 | M-91 | Former M-92 | M-93 | I-94 | M-94 | M-95 | I-96 | M-96 | M-97 | M-99 | Jump to Bottom

M-90 PLEASE NOTE: The M-90 route information has moved to its own page: M-90 Route Listing.

M-91 PLEASE NOTE: The M-91 route information has moved to its own page: M-91 Route Listing.

Former M-92 PLEASE NOTE: The Former M-92 route information can be found on its own page: Former M-92 Route Listing.

M-93 PLEASE NOTE: The M-93 route information has moved to its own page: M-93 Route Listing.

I-94 PLEASE NOTE: The I-94 route information has moved to its own page: I-94 Route Listing.

M-94 PLEASE NOTE: The M-94 route information has moved to its own page: M-94 Route Listing.

M-95 PLEASE NOTE: The M-95 route information has moved to its own page: M-95 Route Listing.

I-96 Western Terminus: US-31 in Norton Shores just southeast of Muskegon
Eastern Terminus: I-75/Fisher Frwy at Exit 48 in downtown Detroit
Length: Updated 192.056 miles
Map: Route Map of I-96
Notes: I-96 is Michigan's only two-digit intrastate Interstate highway, existing only within the state.
  I-96 replaced the route and designation of US-16 in Michigan in 1963. (See the Historic US-16 pages for more information.) As with most of Michigan's other Interstates, the "freeway-ization" of the I-96 corridor was well underway even before the signing of the Interstate Highway Act into law in 1956. It is interesting, though, to note the highway was not fully complete in the Detroit area until 1977.
The I-96 originally proposed in the late 1950s and the I-96 of today run along very different routes west of Grand Rapids. I-96 was originally proposed to run westerly from Detroit through Lansing to Grand Rapids. There, a spur route designated I-196 was proposed to continue along the US-16 corridor to Muskegon, while I-96 was to head southwesterly to Holland and from there southerly along with US-31 to I-94 northeast of Benton Harbor. The first segments of present-day I-196 in Berrien Co were opened as I-96 and all of present-day I-96 from Muskegon to Grand Rapids was opened as I-196 and for several years the freeway "inexplicably" changed numbers at today's Mile 37 on the east side of Grand Rapids. Also, some commercial road maps of the day marked the segment of I-94 from Benton Harbor southwesterly into Indiana concurrently as "I-94/I-96." Whether any I-96 route markers were ever erected along I-94 in this area is doubtful and unknown. Sometime about 1963, the designations of I-96 and I-196 were swapped to their present-day alignments.
In Detroit, I-96 was originally proposed to follow a different routing than was eventually taken. The Jeffries Frwy was originally proposed to run parallel to Grand River Ave (then US-16) from downtown Detroit all the way to Farmington, where the Brighton-Farmington Expwy was constructed (and still in use today as M-5 and I-96). One portion of today's I-96/Jeffries Frwy that actually follows this early proposed route runs from West Grand Blvd to West Chicago. Over time, the western alignment along Schoolcraft Rd through Redford Twp and Livonia became the preferred routing of the freeway. Originally through Livonia, the State Highway Dept wanted to build the freeway as a "normal" suburban freeway at ground level with larger interchanges. After haggling and discussion by local government and state legislators, the department gave in and constructed the Jeffries as the urban "depressed" freeway you see today. From the western side of Livonia, I-96 was then to be routed north concurrnetly with I-275 back to its former alignment—which is does today.
Also in Detroit, that funky bend in the Jeffries, where it passes under Grand River Ave twice (in the Wyoming and Davison Ave area), was constructed as a full freeway-to-freeway interchange to accommodate a future connection with the Davison Frwy (now M-8). Unfortunately, the City of Detroit in the 1970s refused to allow any additional freeways to be built. Although this connection may never be fully utilized, the portion of Davison Ave from I-96/Jeffries Frwy easterly to the beginning of the M-8/Davison Frwy was transferred from the City of Detroit to MDOT in 2001 and is now part of M-8. Whether MDOT has any greater plans for the Davison and this interchange is not clear.
Site contributors Dyche Anderson, Dave Outen and Jim Lindsay were kind enough to contribute information on the somewhat-mysterious designation of M-2. As originally noted here, Mr. Anderson explained Schoolcraft Ave in Redford Twp and the City of Livonia was designated as a state highway, "possibly as M-5," in the mid-1970s while the Jeffries Frwy was under construction. In much the same way that 11 Mile Rd was temporarily signed as M-6 during the construction of I-696/Walter P Reuther Frwy, Schoolcraft Rd was given a similarly mysterious highway designation during this time as well. Schoolcraft Rd forms the two "service drives" along the north and south sides of the I-96/Jeffries Frwy through Livonia and Redford Twp. Until recently, the only source of information on the first M-2 routing was Messrs. Anderson, Outen and Lindsay, but a recent map aquisition verified that, indeed, Schoolcraft was designated M-2 for a time during the 1970s. However, no official MDOT source to date has been located showing the existence of M-2, and that highway designation never made it to the official highway map. —Many, many thanks to Dyche, Dave and Jim!
  New! Allan M. Williams (1892-1979), Ionia County Highway Engineer, had a major impact on several areas of Michigan's highway system, well beyond his day-to-day job helping to design and maintain the roads in Ionia County. In 1929, he introduced the first publicly accessible roadside picnic table on state government right-of-way and a historical marker along Grand River Ave south of Saranac denotes this site to this day. Because of this, MDOT installed many hundreds more of these tables in Roadside Parks and Rest Areas across the state and continues maintaining many of these areas today. Williams also helped draft Michigan's first official road map, collaborated in developing the diamond-shaped route marker that bears the designations of state trunkline routes, and pioneered the use of the angled, concave, straight-blade, front-mounted snowplow. But, most notably for I-96, according to MDOT notes that "in 1926, Williams cut the opening ribbon for the last paved stretch of improved US-16. In 1977, he was asked to perform the same task for the final section of the successor parallel road, I-96."
History: 1933 - Obviously well before I-96—or the entire Interstate Highway System—was ever conceived, but still figuring in to the future route of I-96, is the completion of a 4-mile US-16 bypass of Farmington. This bypass, sometimes referred to as the "Farmington Cutoff" or the "Grand River Cutoff" is a one-way road serving eastbound traffic only. The "regular" US-16 route through downtown Farmington continues to serve both directions of traffic.
  1957 - Although the Interstate Highway Act was signed the previous year, no I-96 route markers are yet erected in Michigan. These developments affect US-16, I-96's predecessor:
  • Approimately 8 miles of US-16 freeway are completed from the west side of Coopersville (present-day Exit 16) to just east of Marne (present-day Exit 24) in Ottawa Co. 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, 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.)
  • Approximately 9 miles of US-16 freeway are opened to traffic from the southeast side of Portland (present-day Exit 77) to just east of M-100 (present-day Exit 86) east of Eagle. The former route of US-16 via Grand River Ave is turned back to local control.
  • (Aug 1) The first four miles of the 22-mile long "Brighton-Farmington Expressway" is completed from US-23 on the east side of Brighton to the Livington/Oakland Co line and opens to traffic. The remainder of the freeway extending into Oakland Co and merging back into existing US-16/Grand River Ave just east of Farmington, opens later in the year. The new freeway consists of 18 miles of brand-new route on new alignment from Brighton to west of Farmington (cnr Grand River Ave & Halsted Rd), while the remainder bypassing Farmington to the south is an upgrade to the existing US-16 bypass of that city. The former route of US-16 via Grand River Ave from US-23 at Brighton to the new interchange west of Farmington (at Halsted Rd) is turned back to local control with the exception of a portion of Grand River between Kensington Rd and Kent Lake Rd on the Livingston/Oakland Co line, which is subsumed into the new freeway routing. (Grand River Ave is now discontinuous at the Livingston/Oakland Co line.) Grand River Ave through downtown Farmington is retained as a state trunkline and is designated BUS US-16.
  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 (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 15) 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-166 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 (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.
  1959–1960 Updated – Sources seem to indicate it was either in 1959 or 1960 when the first Interstate route markers began 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 (Feb 7) New! – The 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.
  1960 (Aug 31) New! – The official route for the segment of I-96 (present-day I-196/US-31) in Berrien, Van Buren and Allegan Cos from I-94/US-12 northeast of Benton Harbor to the south side of Holland is announced by the State Highway Dept. Construction on this segment is scheduled to begin in 1961.
  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) Updated – 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 (Dec 22) Updated – 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.
  1961 (Dec 22) Updated – The remainder of the Detroit-Muskegon Frwy (I-96 and I-196) around the city of Grand Rapids in Kent Co (14.97 miles total) is officially assumed into the state trunkline highway system, although it does not open to traffic until _________.
  1961-62 - Three new segments of freeway are completed, two of which allow motorists to drive 86 miles from Muskegon to nearly Lansing on limited-access highway with no traffic lights or intersections.
  • Approximately 16 miles of I-196/US-16 freeway are opened to traffic from US-31 southeast of Muskegon to the western end of the existing freeway segment on the west side of Coopersville. The former route of US-16 along Airline Hwy, 3rd St (in Fruitport), Apple Ave, Cleveland St and State Rd is turned back to local control.
  • (Dec 22, 1961) Updated About 15 miles of new freeway is completed from the eastern end of the existing freeway segment at Marne, across the north side of Grand Rapids, then southeasterly to the western end of the existing freeway segment at Cascade Rd. The first 13 miles of the new freeway is designated as I-196/US-16, while the last last ten miles (from just west of the East Beltline Ave interchange) are 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 planned to be the spur route from Grand Rapids northwesterly to Muskegon.) 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 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 and Walker to Marne.
  • (Dec 21, 1961, Nov 10, 1962) UpdatedA short 3-mile long extension of the I-96/US-16 freeway is completed from US-23 near Brighton to US-16/Grand River Ave on the north side of Brighton, including the massive new US-23 freeway interchange opens to traffic on Dec 21, 1961. The former route of US-16 through downtown Brighton is turned back to local control nearly an entire year later on Nov 10, 1962.
  1962 (Dec 13) - The final 59 miles of freeway from the Eagle/Grand Ledge area past Lansing and Howell to Brighton are completed and opened to traffic. As of this time, all of US-16 in the state of Michigan is "decommissioned" and all US-16 route markers are taken down, ending a 36-year run for that route designation in the state. 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.
  • Locally-maintained 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.
  • Locally-maintained 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.
  • Locally-maintained 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).
  • Locally-maintained 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.
Also in 1962, a short segment of the I-96/US-31 freeway opens from I-94 northeast of Benton Harbor north to Hagar Shore Rd. This short segment of I-96/US-31 is separated from the remainder of I-96 by 73 miles!
  1963 - Even though the changes of 1962 were monumental, 1963 also proves to be a monumental year in the routing of I-96:
  • In this year, the designations of I-96 and I-196 west of Grand Rapids are "flip-flopped" and take each others' places. This conincides with the completion of a 40-mile stretch of the I-196/US-31 freeway from US-33/Hagar Shore Rd in northern Berrien Co to the south side of Holland. This freeway was to be designated as I-96/US-31, but was opened to traffic as I-196/US-31. Similarly, all I-196 route markers between US-31 southeast of Muskegon and I-96 at Grand Rapids are exchanged for I-96 shields. In addition, BS I-196 leading from the end of I-96 at US-31 to the ferry docks in downtown Muskegon is similarly changed over to BS I-96.
  • Also in 1963, a 4-mile segment of the I-496/M-78 freeway is opened southeast of Lansing from I-96 to Kalamazoo St. BL I-96 in Lansing is altered to run easterly from US-27 (Cedar-Larch Sts) concurrently with M-43/BUS M-78 along Oakland & Saginaw Sts to Homer & Howard Sts, then southerly along Homer & Howard Sts—concurrently with M-78—to the new freeway at Kalamazoo St. From there, BL I-96 now runs concurrently with I-496/M-78 to end at I-96 southeast of Lansing. The former route of BL I-96 via US-27 and US-127 (Larch & Cedar Sts) retains those other designations.
  1966 - BL I-96 in Lansing is transferred back to its 1962-1963 routing when US-127 is transferred to the I-496 route. From jct US-27, M-43, BUS M-78 & US-127 (intersections of Cedar-Larch Sts & Saginaw-Oakland Sts), BL I-96 once again runs southerly via Larch & Cedar Sts to end at I-96 (at Exit 104). US-127 shields replace BL I-96 markers along the 1963-1966 route.
  1971 (Jul 27) Updated - The first 1.3-mile segment of the Jeffries Frwy opens from I-75/Fisher Frwy to I-94/Edsel Ford Frwy in Detroit. Sources indicate this stretch of freeway, which cost $37 million to construct, is not signed as I-96, but rather as just the "Jeffries Frwy" until more of the route is constructed.
  1971 - An additional 2.8 miles of the Jeffries Frwy opens from I-94 northwesterly to Livernois Ave (present-day Exit 188) in Detroit. The BS I-96 designation along parallel Grand River Ave is retained at this time.
  1973 - The odd "elbow" in the Jeffries Frwy from Livernois Ave to BS I-96/Grand River Ave (at Schaefer Hwy) opens to traffic, including the various freeway-to-freeway ramps built to accommodate the connection with the Davison Frwy. It is unclear whether I-96 route markers appear along the Jeffries at this time, although they may have. The remainder of I-96 in Metropolitan Detroit is under construction.
  1974 (June–Sept) New! - All interchanges along I-96 from US-31 at Muskegon to Lansing are posted with exit numbers corresponding to the nearest milemarker. The freeway is milemarked from west to east from Muskegon through Grand Rapids to Lansing. The first exit on I-96 at US-31 and Hile Rd are numbered as Exit 1A, 1B and 1C, the second interchange at Airline Rd near Mile 4 is numbered Exit 4, and so on.
  1974 (Late)–1975 (Early) New! - All remaining interchanges along I-96 from Lansing to the Metro Detroit Area are posted with exit numbers corresponding to the nearest milemarker. The remainder of completed I-96 from Lansing easterly is signed with the new exit numbers by early 1975.
  1975 - An additional 2.5 miles of the I-96/Jeffries Frwy is opened to traffic from the end of the completed freeway at BS I-96/Grand River Ave to M-39/Southfield Frwy in Detroit. By 1975-76, I-96 route markers have been placed along the entire length of the Jeffries Frwy between M-39/Southfield Frwy and I-75/Fisher Frwy near downtown Detroit.
  1976 - Six miles of I-275 are completed between the future I-96/Jeffries Frwy near Plymoth and the jct of I-96 & I-696 in Farmington Hills. Sources show this stretch of freeway is designated only as I-275 pending completion of the Jeffries Frwy through Redford Twp and Livonia. I-96 is still signed along the "Farmington Cutoff," while BS I-96 is still signed along Grand River from Farmington into downtown Detroit. —Thanks to Kevin Roszko for confirming this!
  1977 - The biggest changes to the route of I-96 in 14 years occur as the Jeffries Frwy is completed from M-39/Southfield Frwy in Detroit, through Redford Twp and Livonia, to I-275 near Plymouth. The I-96 designation is applied to this freeway, then runs northerly concurrently with I-275 to the former route of I-96 in Farmington Hills. The former spur-route of I-96 around Farmington is re-designated as an extension of M-102 (present-day M-5). BL I-96 through downtown Farmington loses is posted route markers, but is retained as an unsigned state trunkline. BS I-96 from the former end of I-96 to M-102/Eight Mile Rd becomes part of the extension of M-102 (now part of M-5), while the portion of BS I-96 from Eight Mile Rd to I-96 at Exit 185 is designated as M-5. From the southeastern end of M-5, BS I-96/Grand River Ave is retained as an unsigned state trunkline as "OLD BS I-96." Interestingly, present at the ribbon-cutting ceremony is retired Ionia County Highway Engineer Allan Williams – see note above for details.
  1982 - A BS I-96 routing is added along Grand River Ave from I-96 at Exit 77 into downtown Portland.
  1984 - In Muskegon, the BS I-96 route designation is removed in its entirety. Most of that route had been concurrently signed with BUS US-31, which remains. At Lansing, a new US-27 freeway opens bypassing the city to the north. Between the new freeway at Exit 91 and existing US-27/TEMP I-69/Lansing Rd, I-96 is concurrently designated with US-27.
  1987 - In late 1987, a new segment of I-69 is completed northeast of Lansing and I-69 is rerouted north concurrently with I-96/US-27 from Exit 98 to Exit 90, then easterly with US-27. The former concurrent I-96/TEMP I-69 between Exit 98 and Exit 106 reverts back to just I-96.
  1991 - As part of the completion of the final segment of the I-69/US-27 freeway southwest of Lansing, the concurrent portion of I-69/US-27 along I-96 is shortened by approximately 1 mile from Exit 98 at Lansing Rd to the new I-69/US-27 interchange (Exit 97) to the north.
  2001 - As part of MDOT's program to remove US-27 from the state, the US-27 route markers are removed from the six-mile portion of the route concurrent with I-96 west of Lansing. The last vesitages of US-27 wouldn't be removed from Michigan until mid-2002.
  2007 (Oct 31) - The entire route of BS I-96 at Portland is turned back to city control and is no longer a state trunkline highway.
Freeway: All of I-96 is freeway.
NHS: Entire route.
Business Connection: Former BS I-96 - Portland. Former spur-route from Exit 77 into downtown, decommissioned Oct 31, 2007.
  BL I-96 - Lansing. From Exit 90 to Exit 104.
  BL I-96 - Howell. From Exit 133 to Exit 141.
Continue on: Hwy 3 into Ontario
Weblinks: I-96 @ Michigan Highway Ends - photos of the termini of I-96 at Dan Garnell's excellent Michigan Highway Ends website.

M-96 Western Terminus: BL I-94 on the east side of Kalamazoo (cnr King Hwy & BL I-94)
Eastern Terminus: I-69 at Exit 36 west of Marshall, at jct I-69 & BL I-94
Length: Updated 34.059 miles
Map: Route Map of M-96
Notes: One of the many changes occurring as part of the Rationalization process was the addition of more than 50 miles of formerly county roads and city streets in Calhoun Co into the state highway system. The actual transfers took place October 31, 1998, but it was not until 2000 that the various realignments and new routings in and around Battle Creek were signed. In Battle Creek, the routing of M-96 was changed to encompass some of the newly-transferred highways, being nearly doubled in length, continuing easterly from its former terminus concurrently with BL I-94 via Dickman Rd, then joining the newly-rerouted M-37 via Helmer Rd southerly from Dickman to Columbia Ave, where M-37 turns west. There, the new extension of M-96 turns easterly via Columbia Ave and travels across the city of Battle Creek to BL I-94/E Michigan Ave, running concurrently with that route to I-94 (at Exit 104). Then M-96 continues by itself to I-69 at Marshall. Ironically, Columbia Ave was originally constructed as a state highway in 1935 and 1940 as a US-12 southern bypass of Battle Creek, and was in use as a state trunkline until US-12 was transferred onto the new I-94/US-12 freeway in 1959. In addition, the portion of Michigan Ave between I-94 (at Exit 104) and I-69 (at Exit 36) was also originally part of US-12. Prior to the recent change, which resulted in a net gain of 17.77 miles, M-96 was 19.00 miles long.
M-96 owes a debt of gratitude to the existence of I-94, for most of today's M-96 follows portions of highways which were superceeded by the I-94 freeway, namely US-12.
History: 1926 - M-96 is created from a former routing of M-17 from Galesburg to downtown Battle Creek. When Most of M-17 in Michigan is replaced in 1926 by US-12, the US-12 routing utilizes a different alignment than M-17 had used between Galesburg and Battle Creek. That former segment of M-17 which didn't become US-12 was designated M-96. In Battle Creek, sources show M-96 is concurrently routed M-37 via Michigan Ave through downtown, both ending at US-12 at the intersection of Michigan Ave & James St east of downtown.
  1936 - Minor changes occur in downtown Battle Creek. First, the concurrent M-37 routing with M-96 is scaled back from ending (with M-96) at US-12 at James St & Michigan Ave to end at M-78/Capital Ave. Second, a brand-new US-12A designation is routed through downtown Battle Creek, joining M-96/M-37 from Angell St easterly, continuing with M-96 past M-78/Capital Ave to end at US-12, along with M-96, at US-12 east of downtown.
  c.1937 - With a rerouting of US-12 in the Battle Creek area, US-12A's concurrency is scaled back to the portion of M-96 from M-78/Capital Ave to US-12 at James St. The former US-12A/M-37/M-96 routing via Michigan Ave through downtown reverts back to just M-37/M-96.
  1939 - By 1939, US-12A in Battle Creek is removed altogether. M-96 retains its designation along Michigan Ave, however.
  1941 - More changes in downtown Battle Creek. First, the concurrent M-37 is scaled back to end at M-96 northwest of downtown. M-96 now continues on its own via Michigan Ave into downtown. Second, a new BUS US-12 designation is created when US-12 is rerouted onto Columbia Ave east of M-78/Capital Ave. The new BUS US-12 designation runs concurrently with M-96, which is also extended from James St to end at US-12/Columbua Ave intersection.
  1944 - A new state-constructed highway, Dickman Rd, is built to connect Fort Custer with Battle Creek. While not receiving a route designation at this time, Dickman Rd would later figure prominently into M-96's history.
  1954 - With the rerouting of US-12 from Kalamazoo to east of Galesburg onto a completely new alignment, M-96 is extended weserly via the former route of US-12 from Galesburg through Comstock, ending at US-12 on the east side of Kalamazoo. (The former US-12A via Michigan Ave from M-96 at Comstock into Kalamazoo is turned back to local control and does not become M-96A.)
  1958 - M-96 through downtown Battle Creek is turned into a pair of one-way streets. At Wood St, M-96 eastbound now turns southerly for one block via Wood to Jackson St, then easterly via Jackson to Main St, where M-96 merges back with the original routing of M-96/BUS US-12. The former two-way route of M-96 (and M-96/BUS US-12) via Michigan Ave between Wood St and Main St becomes one-way westbound.
  1959 - With the completion of the I-94/US-12 freeway around Battle Creek, M-96 and BUS US-12 are extended easterly via Michigan Ave to terminate at the new freeway (at present-day Exit 104). Also, westbound M-96 is rerouted off Michigan Ave. Now westbound M-96/BUS US-12 turns northerly onto Elm St, then westerly via Van Buren St past downtown (BUS US-12 leaves the route at M-78/Capital Ave), rejoining Michigan Ave west of downtown. The former westbound route via Michigan Ave from Main St to Wood St is turned back to local control.
  1960 - BUS US-12 at Battle Creek is redesignated as BL I-94. A t the same time, M-96 is scaled back to end at M-78/BL I-94/Capital Ave.
  1961 - Twenty years after removing the concurrent M-37 designation, the route of M-96 into downtown Battle Creek from M-37 is once again co-signed with M-37, much as it was 1926-1941.
  1965 - M-96 is scaled back to end at M-89 west of Battle Creek near the Calhoun/Kalamazoo Co line. The former M-96 from M-89 to M-37/Bedford Rd becomes an extension of M-89, while the formerly concurrent M-37/M-96 from there into downtown Battle Creek becomes just M-37.
  1971 - M-96 is rerouted to continue easterly from Augusta via Fort Custer Hwy (in Kalamazoo Co) and Dickman Rd (in Calhoun Co), terminating at BL I-94 near Springfield. The former route via Augusta Dr from Augusta to M-89 is turned back to local control.
  1998 (Oct 31) - The route of M-96 is extended easterly via BL I-94/Dickman Rd to Helmer Rd, which is newly-designated as M-37, then southerly vith M-37 via Helmer Rd to Columbia Ave, where M-37 turns westerly and M-96 turns easterly to follow Columbia Ave across Battle Creek to BL I-94/Michigan Ave east of downtown. From there, M-96 continues concurrently with BL I-94/Michigan Ave to I-94 at Exit 104 (where BL I-94 ends) and continues solo via Michigan Ave to Marshall, where it now terminates at I-69/US-27.
  2000 - MDOT finally lets contracts to sign the realignment of M-96 as well as the many other realigned and newly-created state trunkline routes in and around Battle Creek
Freeway/Expwy: No portion of M-96 is freeway or expressway.
NHS: From the westernmost jct of BL I-94 & M-96 (cnr of Dickman Rd & Martin Luther King Dr) in western Battle Creek to I-94 Exit 104 east of Battle Creek.
Weblinks: M-96 @ Michigan Highway Ends - photos of the termini of M-96 at Dan Garnell's excellent Michigan Highway Ends website.

M-97 Southern Terminus: M-3/Gratiot Ave in northeastern Detroit (cnr Gunston Ave & Gratiot Ave)
Northern Terminus: M-59/Hall Rd on the Clinton Twp/Macomb Twp border north of Mount Clemens (cnr Groesbeck Hwy, North Rd & Hall Rd)
Length: Updated 17.211 miles
Map: Route Map of M-97
Notes: Known as Gunston Ave and Hoover Ave between M-3/Gratiot Ave and M-102/Eight Mile Rd in Detroit, and as Groesbeck Hwy between M-102 and M-59/Hall Rd. Governor Alexander J. Groesbeck (1873-1953), who held that office from 1921 to 1926, was an early supporter of "good roads" in the state of Michigan. (Biography of Governor Groesbeck from the Mackinac Center website.)
History: 1923 (Mar 12) New! - A new 12.0-mile state trunkline route with the designation M-97 is determined in Oscoda Co along a mixture of existing and not-yet-constructed roads. From M-33 in downtown Mio, the new M-97 runs southerly for 2 miles via Mount Tom Rd, then westerly 1 mile along Boerner Rd before turning south via Stitt Rd for a mile, continuing for 2½ more miles along an unconstructed facility to the center of Sec.12 where it turns easterly along an unconstructed road for 1½ miles, turning southerly to run (generally) along Hoy Rd for 3½ miles, then another mile along an unconstructed facility to a terminus on the Oscoda/Ogemaw Co line southeast of Happy Lake.
  1925 (Oct 24) New! - Just 2½ years after being officially designated along a mixture of existing and unbuilt roadways from Mio southerly, the route of M-97 is transferred to a more direct route, running due southerly along Mount Tom Rd for 10.1 miles from downtown Mio to a terminus at the Oscoda/Ogemaw Co Line near Loon Lake. The former route is either transferred to local control (for the constructed portions) or left unconstructed (for the unbuilt segments).
  1927 (July 21) New! - It is assumed the M-97 designation from Mio southerly to the Oscoda/Ogemaw Co line is officially supplanted by a rerouting of the M-33 designation due southerly from Mio at this point (or earlier), as a 10.7-mile state trunkline route is officially designated along Reid Hwy (present-day Groesbeck Hwy) in Macomb Co. This second iteration of M-97 begins at M-102/Eight Mile Rd on the Detroit city limit and ending at Harrington Blvd at the southern limit of Mount Clemens, although only the segment from M-102/Eight Mile Rd to 14 Mile Rd in Fraser may be signed or open to traffic initially.
  1931 Updated - By 1931, M-97 has been extended northerly via Reid Hwy to present-day Harrington Blvd. The route of M-97 then turns easterly via a "Marked and Maintained" segment (not officially a state trunkline highway route, but signed as part of a trunkline route and maintained by the State temporarily) to end at US-25/Gratiot Ave in Mt Clemens.
  1932 - M-97 is extended southerly into Detroit via Hoover Rd and Gunston Ave to end at US-25/Gratiot Ave northeast of downtown.
  1949 Updated - With the extension of Groesbeck Hwy northerly to M-59/Hall Rd, M-97 is routed northerly as well. The former route between Groesbeck Hwy and US-25/Gratiot Ave in Mt Clemens via Harrington Blvd was a "Marked and Maintained" route with jurisdiction remaining in local hands, but state trunkline marking and maintenance is now discontinued.
  1991 (Nov 5) - The portion of Hillsdale St from Groesbeck Hwy to Harrington Blvd in the southwestern portion of Mount Clemens is turned back to local control. This segment of Hillsdale had been part of M-97 prior to 1949.
Freeway/Expwy: No portion of M-97 is freeway or expressway.
Weblinks: M-97 @ Michigan Highway Ends - photos of the termini of M-18 at Dan Garnell's excellent Michigan Highway Ends website.

M-99 Southern Terminus: Ohio state line (connection w/OH SR-15) southeast of Frontier, 18 miles south of Hillsdale
Northern Terminus: I-496/Ransom E Olds Frwy at Exit 5 in Lansing at jct with Capitol Loop (cnr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd [both nbd & sbd] & St Joseph St)
Length: Updated 86.081 miles
Map: Route Map of M-99
Notes: Until 1939, what is now M-99 was designated as M-9. At that time, every single-digit state trunkline route was given a two- or three-digit route designation, reportedly to reserve all single-digit designations for a planned network of "superhighways" across the state. While this single-digit-designated "superhighway" network never quite came to be and many of the single-digit route designations were later re-used beginning in the 1970s, the M-9 designation has never been re-used.
During the early 1990s, all of Logan St in the city of Lansing was co-named M L King Jr Blvd. Later, all Logan St signs were removed and the street became known only as M L King Jr Blvd within the city, including all of M-99 north of I-96. While MDOT was able to use "M-99 - Logan St/M L King Blvd" on the large overhead signs on I-496 during a mid-1990s re-signing project, all exit signs on I-96 at Exit 101 read "M-99 - Logan St/Eaton Rapids." MDOT, however, did erect smaller auxillary signs before the interchange indicating the M L King Jr Blvd name. In 1999, MDOT covered up "Logan St" on the I-496 exit signs, while brand-new "M-99 - M L King Blvd/Eaton Rapids" signs were erected on I-96.
History: 1923 - M-99 is designated via a former route of M-11 (the West Michigan Pike), beginning at M-11 in Montague and heading westerly, then northerly parallel to M-11, ending at M-11 between New Era and Shelby. More specifically, the route of M-99 along present-day roads is: westerly from Montague via Dowling, Lamos and Post Rds, then northerly via Old 99, Meinert, and Indian Bay Rds to the Muskegon/Oceana Co line. In Oceana Co, M-99 runs via present-day 56th Ave, Arthur Rd, 64th Ave and Hayes Rd, ending at Oceana Dr. It is interesting to note, however, that some official State Highway Department records show the new route of M-11 from Montague through Rothbury and New Era is not officially determined as a state trunkline, although all maps show M-11 clearly following that route and M-99 taking over its former route.
  1927 (Dec 31) - The Muskegon Co portion of M-99 is offically cancelled and turned back to county control and the apparently-signed route of US-31 (recently commissioned along M-11) from Montague due northerly to the Muskegon/Oceana Co line is determined as a state trunkline highway. Since the same changes will not be made in Oceana Co for nearly another year, one could assume: 1) that the M-99 signs were removed from Muskegon but not Oceana, 2) that all markers were left in place until the Oceana transfer could take place, or 3) that all M-99 markers are removed in anticipation of the transfer in Oceana.
  1928 (Dec 18) - The Oceana Co portion of M-99 is turned back to local control and, similar to the 1927 changes noted above, US-31 (nee M-11) is officially determined from the Muskgon Co line northerly through Rothbury to New Era. If they had not already been removed, all M-99 route markers were likely taken down at this time.
  1929 (Dec 2) - A 7.8 mile long spur-route in Schoolcraft Co, which was labled as M-137 on a 1930 State Highway Dept map, is determined on this date. It is unclear whether any M-137 markers are erected on this road, as construction was not completed until 1931 when it is redesignated as M-99.
  1931 - The M-137 spur-route in Schoolcraft Co is redesignated as M-99, presumably as physical construction on the road is completed and it opens to traffic. (The M-137 designation is transferred to Grand Traverse Co.) M-99 now begins at US-2 at White Dale (present-day Gulliver) 14 miles east of downtown Manisitque, and proceeds to the Lake Michigan shore 7 miles to the southeast.
  1933 - Official MSHD maps this year show M-99 as being scaled back by three miles, theoretically ending at Co Rd 431, the road leading to Seul Choix Point Lighthouse, although the full 7.8-mile route to the Schoolcraft/Mackinac Co line remains determined as a trunkline.
  1934 - In mid-1934, the official MDSH maps show M-99 as re-extended to the east, this time by an extra mile for a total of approximately eight, terminating at Port Inland, on the Schoolcraft/Mackinac Co line.
  1937 (July 13) - The second iteration of M-99 comes to an end when the Schoolcraft Co route of M-99 between Gulliver (formerly White Dale) and Port Inland is turned back to local control as Co Rd 432.
  1940 (Spring) - The third iteration of M-99 debuts as a part of a drive by the State Highway Dept to remove all single-digit route designations, reserving them for a future "Superhighway" program. The M-99 designation, utilized until 1937 in Schoolcraft Co, is then transferred onto the routing of M-9 from the Ohio state line to Lansing, completely supplanting it.
  1940 (Nov 12) - Both M-60 and M-99 are rerouted in Homer. The former route of M-60 (and M-99 east of Hillsdale St) along Main and Byron Sts is turned back to local control while Leigh St one block north of Main is determined as the new trunkline routing. Interestingly, though, the one block of Hillsdale St from Main St (former M-60) to Leigh St (new M-60) is not transferred to state control, meaning that while M-99 route markers are likely erected along that one block, it technically remains a city street.
  1945 - M-99 is slightly realigned near Dimondale from present-day Bailey Rd onto its present alignment; the former route is turned back to local control.
  1946 - The final 8 gravel-surfaced miles of M-99 are paved, between Frontier and the Ohio state line.
  1952-54 - In mid-1952, the 8-mile stretch of M-99 between Litchfield and Homer reverts back to gravel-surfaced from being paved for many years. It isn't until 1954 that the section is again hard-surfaced.
  1953 (Nov 6) - The one block of Hillsdale St in downtown Homer from Main St to M-60/Leigh St is transferred to the state, rectifying what was likely an oversight in the jurisdictional transfers in Homer in late-1940.
  1960 (Jan 6) - With the completion of the I-94/US-12 freeway around Albion, the formerly concurrent US-12/M-99 stretch in the area becomes M-99/BUS US-12. In addition, a very slight 2/10th mile realignment to the route of M-99/BUS US-12 from the I-94/US-12 freeway southerly to Michigan Ave is officially certified.
  1960 - The BUS US-12 routing at Albion is redesignated as BL I-94, meaning the concurrent M-99/BUS US-12 routing becomes M-99/BL I-94.
  1966 (Oct 4) - M-99 is realigned in Hillsdale Co. Formerly running via Montgomery Rd through Frontier, then northerly via Hillsdale Rd into Hillsdale, M-99 now runs due northerly via Pioneer Rd (partially constructed on new alignment) to M-34 near Osseo, then continues northwesterly replacing the M-34 designation into Hillsdale. The more-direct new routing shaves about one mile from the route of M-99 and the former route is turned back to local control. The new route is opened to traffic in late September and officially determined as a state trunkline route on Oct 4.
  1966 (Oct 4) New! - Also on this date, the route of M-99 through downtown Hillsdale is officially modified to travel around the east and north sides of the "downtown triangle." M-66 formerly entered downtown Hillsdale from the south via Howell St, meeting M-34 at its western terminus at the six-way intersection of Howell St, North St & Broad St, with M-34 approaching from the southeast along Broad St. M-66 then veered northwesterly along Broad St for one block (along the west side of the "downtown triangle," then turned westerly via Carlton Rd toward Jonesville. Now, M-66 approaches downtown Hillsdale from the southeast along Broad St (the former route of M-34—see above), then turns notherly at North St to follow Hillsdale St for one block along the east side of the "downtown triangle," before turning westerly via Carleton Rd toward Jonesville. An uncrossable barrier now separates the trunkline traffic (Broad St southeast of North St and Hillsdale St from North St northerly) from accessing Howell St (south of North St) and Broad St (northwest of North St).
  1975 (Mar 6) - M-99 between Hillsdale and Jonesville is completely reconstructed, largely on a new, modern alignment with less sharp turns and a new sweeping curve on the south side of Jonesville. Two segments of the former alignment to surive—e.g. that were not obliterated by the new highway—remain as unsigned/old state trunklines, both officially designated internally as OLD M-99. The segments include Beck Rd on the north side of Hillsdale, looping west of the new highway, and Beck Rd/St from south of Jonesville northerly into the village, to the east of the new highway.
  1975 (Apr 1) - The conversion of Logan St (Martin Luther King Jr Blvd) in Lansing commences with the determination of approximately 0.45 mile of new trunkline beginning at Alsdorf St and running northwesterly to the Grand River then northerly to the intersection of Birch St & Olds Ave. This route will become the new southbound side of M-99 once the project is complete, although M-99 route markers may have been erected at this time.
  1977 (Dec 1) - A dozen years before the creation of the Capitol Loop in Lansing, the northern terminus of M-99 is reconfigured into a one-way pair in the area of the I-496 interchange. Logan St (present-day Martin Luther King Jr Blvd) from St Joseph St (the I-496 wbd service drive) northerly to Kalamazoo St is transferred to state control as the northound route, while a new 0.95-mile long southbound connector is officially assumed into the trunkline system beginning at the cnr of Logan & Kalamazoo running southwesterly to the cnr of Birch St & St Joseph St. Birch from St Joseph St southerly to Olds Ave, now the new sbd side of M-99, is also transferred to state control. While the M-99 markers officially end at I-496/US-27, the state trunkline itself extends northerly from the freeway via Logan-Birch to end at Kalamazoo St.
  1980 - A major reconstruction project along M-99 from Petrieville Hwy just north of Eaton Rapids northerly to just north of Holt Hwy near Dimondale is completed, widening M-99 from a two-lane highway to a four-lane divided facility.
  2007 New! - The route of M-99 through downtown Hillsdale is reconstructed and reconfigured, essentially reversing the changes made in 1966. Once again, Broad St through downtown Hillsdale is opened to through traffic and M-99 traffic again passes the "downtown triangle" to the west before turning westerly via Carleton Rd toward Jonesville. This reduces the number of turns required to stay on M-99 through downtown Hillsdale from two to one and removes what may have been a confusing pattern to the streets in the downtown area. While the project is completed in 2007, the official jurisdictional transfers would not occur until the middle of the following winter.
  2008 (Feb 20) New! - The jurisdictional transfers related to the reconfiguration of M-99 through downtown Hillsdale in 2007 are made official. Two street segments are transferred from MDOT to City of Hillsdale control, while one city street segment becomes a state trunkline. The former route of M-99 along Carleton Rd from Broad St southeasterly to Hillsdale St (0.05 mile) and Hillsdale St from Carleton Rd southerly to Broad St (0.05 mile) is tranferred to the City as a City Major Street. The new route of M-99 along Broad St from Howell St at North St northerly to Carleton Rd (0.09 mile) is officially transferred to MDOT jurisdiction, resulting in a net loss of 0.01 mile to the overall length of M-99.
Freeway/Expwy: No portion of M-99 is freeway or expressway.
Continue on: OH SR-15 into Ohio - John Simpson's Website
Weblinks: M-99 @ Michigan Highway Ends - photos of the termini of M-99 at Dan Garnell's excellent Michigan Highway Ends website.


M-90 | M-91 | Former M-92 | M-93 | I-94 | M-94 | M-95 | I-96 | M-96 | M-97 | M-99 | Jump to Bottom

Home | Jump to Highway Listings:





  Bus 2-31
  Bus 32-94

  Bus 96-496