Counties detail plans for local 2021 projects


TRI-CITY AREA — Although 2021 is shaping up to be a busy one for interstate projects, the scene will be quieter on the local level.

Road commissions from both St. Clair and Lapeer counties report they’ll each undertake just one major project in the Tri-City area this calendar year. As reported earlier, the Michigan Department of Transportation plans to tackle two multi-mile projects on I-69 in both counties in 2021.

In St. Clair County the final phase of Capac Road’s reconstruction is due to take place this year. In Lapeer County, General Squier Road in Almont and Dryden townships will be rehabilitated.

The last time motorists encountered Capac Road closures in Berlin Township was 2019. They can expect more detours later this year when the final stretch of the busy road is reconstructed.

Capac Road in Berlin Township

Since 2015 the St. Clair County Road Commission has authorized projects from the Capac village limits south to the Macomb County line. In 2013, the road commission replaced the Capac Rd. bridge over the Belle River. The 2021 phase encompasses the southernmost portion—from Hough Road to the county line.

The road commission anticipates work will start in April of this year and wrap up in October.

“The Capac Road project will be out for bid in late February, for summer construction. Our current estimate for this project is approximately $1.38 million,” said Kirk Weston, the road commission’s managing director.

As of now, it constitutes the only major road project the road commission plans to tackle in the Tri-City area this year.

Weston said that most other projects in the area will constitute ditching and other maintenance work.

“We will be having our annual meetings with the townships (virtually) at the end of February. More projects may come out of that, as we review needs and funding with each township,” he said.

General Squier Road in Almont and Dryden townships

Destain Gingell, county highway engineer for the Lapeer County Road Commission, said they plan to rehabilitate General Squier Road, between Rochester and Bishop road, and utilize a hot mix asphalt overlay on General Squier between Bishop Road and Almont village line.

“These two General Squier projects combined total about 4.5 miles costing approximately $2 million dollars and was let through the Lapeer County Road Commission in 2020 and awarded to low bidder ACE-Saginaw Paving,” Gingell said.

“The project is scheduled to start early spring 2021 starting with drainage work and fixed object removals. T.G. Priehs of Imlay City and PRI of Lapeer are a couple of the local sub-contractors that will be working on this project. It is good see local contractors working on the roads within the county.”

He said it’s also that time of year where their staff is in the process of working with township officials to determine township road improvement projects.

Gingell noted that the commission will also take time in 2021 to update and expand their asset management plan.

“If funding holds as predicted we hope to be able to add another $550,000 plus worth of hot mix asphalt overlay and/or related road work to the 2021 construction year based on utilizing our asset management strategy,” he said.