The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is giving Michigan $105 million in funds toward their plans to replace the I-375 freeway in Detroit, and replace it with a lower-speed boulevard at city-street level.
The project will realign the ramps and freeway near I-375, convert the freeway to a slower-speed boulevard, install traffic measures, fix up a storm water runoff pump station, construct wider sidewalks and reconnect neighborhood streets to the boulevard, according to a USDOT news release.
The infusion of federal funding for the $300 million project will allow construction to begin as soon as 2025, speeding up the Michigan Department of Transportation's (MDOT) timeline by two years, MDOT spokesman Jeff Cranson said.
The total cost of the I-375 rebuild is estimated at $270 million, plus another $30 million for engineering, according to MDOT. But the long-sought project is still not fully funded.
"We will continue to work with the Legislature and local partners on additional funding opportunities," Cranson said.
City leaders have envisioned the elimination of I-375 as a way to reconnect once-predominantly Black neighborhoods divided by the highway when it was built in the 1950s and '60s, bulldozing the Black Bottom and Paradise Valley residential and commercial districts in the name of urban renewal.
Source: USDOT, MDOT