Dual construction projects bring headaches to Okemos

Freeman

OKEMOS, Mich. (WILX) – It’s construction season in Michigan and one city is seeing its fair share of orange barrels — Okemos. As if the Okemos Bridge project wasn’t difficult enough to navigate, construction on Grand River Avenue is causing headaches for residents. People in the area said it’s getting […]

OKEMOS, Mich. (WILX) – It’s construction season in Michigan and one city is seeing its fair share of orange barrels — Okemos.

As if the Okemos Bridge project wasn’t difficult enough to navigate, construction on Grand River Avenue is causing headaches for residents.

People in the area said it’s getting harder to get around and they don’t know how much more they can take. Local residents and those who need to commute through the area said they’re frustrated with having to find alternative routes to avoid the traffic.

“This traffic is ridiculous,” said Julie Anderson. “It’s difficult for my school buses in the morning. It’s difficult for my residents trying to get to and from work in the morning.”

Anderson manages the Arrow Tree Apartments on Dobie Road, where much of the traffic is being diverted.

“Even myself trying to get here. I live a quarter mile away and I’m really close to going back to walking because it’s traffic gridlock here in the morning,” Anderson said.

Samuel Nealy, who lives at the Arrow Tree Apartments, said it’s taking him nearly four times as long in the morning to get his child to school. With all the buildup, he said he’s witnessed more instances of road rage.

“You get people who are not that agreeable,” Nealy said. “Because of traffic, so you have more situations like that.”

It’s not the first time the apartment complex has been plagued with traffic due to construction. Anderson said Meridian Township was working on a drainage project that caused chaos that landed in her parking lot.

“CATA busses got stuck in here, school busses were stuck in here,” Anderson recalled. “I had non-residents trying to fly around here on Dobie Road.”

One incident in particular led to an HVAC company forking over cash to fix the apartment’s property.

“There was an HVAC company that thought he was going to circumvent the construction and got stuck — buried to his axel — in my yard just trying to drive through the grass,” Anderson said.

“Have some patience,” Nealy said. “Just be safe.”

Construction on the bridge on Okemos Road is expected to be completed by November. The construction on Grand River Avenue is expected to last more than a year.

More: WILX News 10 Live Traffic Map

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