Michigan State Route 6
State Route 6 or SR-6 is a state route in the U.S. state of Michigan. The freeway forms a southern bypass of the city of Grand Rapids and is 20 miles long.
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At Jenison, SR-6 begins at an interchange with Interstate 196, the highway from Benton Harbor to Grand Rapids. The highway then runs 2×2 lanes east, forming the southern bypass of Grand Rapids. At Cutlerville, one crosses US 131, the highway from Kalamazoo to Grand Rapids. After that, the highway continues east, past the city’s airport, where SR-6 connects to Interstate 96, which runs to Lansing and Detroit.
As early as 1955, an east-west freeway south of Grand Rapids was planned. Construction was delayed, however, initially because there was no money, but after the gas tax was raised in 1972 to build local projects, including State Route 6, little happened. Studies were carried out into the exact route in the 1980s, later an option as a toll road was added in 1991, but this did not materialize in the end.
Construction of State Route 6, after decades of planning, finally began in 1997, with the first section opened to traffic on November 20, 2001, running from SR-37 to I-96 and being the eastern portion of State Route 6 The rest was constructed between 2002 and 2004, and on November 17, 2004, this section opened to traffic from I-196 to SR-37. The planning of the highway took more than 40 years, the construction 7 years.
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The highway does handle some traffic, with 35,000 to 52,000 vehicles per day.
Michigan State Route 53
State Route 53 or M-53 is a state route and partial freeway in the U.S. state of Michigan. The road forms a north-south route in the east of the state, and is partially located in the Detroit metropolitan area. In Detroit, the road is a major high street, but in the northernmost suburbs, the road is also a highway, the Columbus Freeway. Then the road continues for a long way to Port Austin on the immense Lake Huron. The route is 195 kilometers long.
The road begins just east of downtown Detroit as Van Dyke Street, a four-lane main thoroughfare. Depopulation has hit hard in this area, with neighborhoods where 75% or more of the houses have been demolished. One then passes 8 Mile Road, the dividing line between the poor neighborhoods of Detroit and the more affluent suburbs to the north of it. You then arrive in Warren, the largest suburb of Detroit with 137,000 inhabitants. The road here is still called Van Dyke Avenue, but has 6 lanes. Interstate 696. intersects near downtown Warren, the Reuther Freeway, which serves the northern suburbs. We then arrive at Sterling Heights, a suburb of 128,000 inhabitants. This is where the highway portion of SR-53 begins. There are 2×2 lanes available as one goes north through Shelby.
Leaving the conurbation, SR-53’s freeway status also ends, and the road becomes a regular main road leading north. At Imlay City, one crosses Interstate 69, the highway from Lansing and Flint to Port Huron and Toronto. After that, a truly rural section of 75 miles begins to the shore of Lake Huron in Port Austin.
State Route 53 was originally planned as a major north-south highway through eastern Detroit and the suburbs of Warren and Sterling Heights, more or less similar to State Route 39 (Southfield Freeway) in western Detroit. The section of highway from Sterling Heights to Washington opened to traffic in 1965.
The road is fairly busy, in Warren the non-motorway section has 50,000 vehicles per day. The highway section in Sterling Heights has a maximum of 62,000 vehicles per 24 hours. To the north the intensities decrease rapidly.
Michigan State Route 59
State Route 59 or M-59 is a state route and freeway in the U.S. state of Michigan. The road forms an east-west connection in southeastern Michigan, and is partially located in the Detroit metropolitan area. The road begins at Interstate 96 in Howell and then runs to Pontiac, continuing as a highway to Sterling Heights. The road ends at Interstate 94 at Mount Clemens. The entire route is 97 kilometers long.
The highway begins near downtown Pontiac, a city of 67,000 in the Detroit metropolitan area. The road runs 2×2 lanes east and then intersects with Interstate 75, the highway from Detroit to Flint. You then pass through the suburb of Rochester Hills, which has a population of 69,000. The highway portion ends in Sterling Heights, where SR-59 continues as 2×3 Hall Road to Mount Clemens.
On October 18, 1966, the first stretch of highway between Pontiac and Rochester Road, a six-mile stretch of highway, including the cloverleaf with I-75, opened. In 1968, the highway was extended a few miles west to downtown Pontiac. On December 6, 1972, the easternmost section opened from State Route 150 to Mound Road in Sterling Heights, for some five miles.
The highway has 88,000 vehicles per day at its busiest point in Rochester Hills.