By Susan Carroll
The Road Commission for Oakland County will be hosting a meeting on June 7 that is open to the public to address the Baldwin Road widening construction project.
The public will be able to meet with the road commission staff in an informal setting to have their questions answered regarding the area development.
Chris Barnett, Orion Township Supervisor, stated that one area of public concern is the number of roundabouts and the possible difficulties traveling through the area while construction is in process.
He is confident that the project phasing will work; the west side of the road will be built out first, then the traffic will be shifted so the old road can be torn up. There will always be two lanes open for traffic, just as it is currently.
The plan includes two phases to widen Baldwin Road.
The first phase will include reconstructing the current two-lane road into a wide-median four-lane boulevard between Morgan and Judah; and a five-lane road between Judah and Gregory.
At the Judah and Gregory intersections, roundabouts will be created.
This phase is slated to begin this July, with completion in November of 2018.
The second and final phase is on the calendar to launch in November 2018 and continuing into 2019.
Gregory to Maybee Road will be widened into a narrow-median four-lane boulevard; and Maybee to Waldon Road will become a wide median four-lane boulevard.
Completing the project will be the three roundabouts that will go in at the intersections of Waldon and Maybee roads and in front of the Great Lakes Athletic Club.
So where does the money come from? Of the estimated $50 million project, 80 percent is from the federal government, with a 10 percent match contribution from the road commission and 10 percent from Orion Township.
Barnett is confident that the design will work.
“This project has been in the works for ten years and there has been input from the top engineers in the country. This federal aid project is managed by the Road Commission of Oakland County, not Orion Township,” he said.
“The township’s goal is to keep people informed and encourages them to stay connected. We realize that it is a huge project that causes travel concerns and tries people’s patience.”
Both the RCOC and Orion Township encourage anyone with questions to mark their calendar and bring them to the June 7 meeting.
Staying connected is possible by visiting the Baldwin Facebook page at https://facebook.com/BaldwinRd/ for weekly updates; as well as downloading the Orion Township mobile app.
The Road Commission’s website on the Baldwin Road expansion is filled with useful information, including a slideshow on the history of the project that extends over that ten year period. It can be viewed by visiting http://rcocweb.org/329/Baldwin-Road-2017-2019.