Scio Township is looking at a pedestrian crossing for the I-94 overpass

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A recent look down Zeeb Road toward the I-94 overpass. photo by Lonnie Huhman

In order to fully extend the Zeeb Road Pathway to the north and south, Scio Township needs to take on some planning challenges, specifically, how to cross I-94 and the Huron River in a safe way.

To begin moving forward, for at least one part of the pathway, the Scio Township Board approved the proposal for preliminary work by OHM, Scio's engineering consultants, on the Zeeb Road Pathway segment that crosses I-94.

This is part of Phase Six of the pathway project.

According to the board meeting packet, “The Phase VI segment of the Zeeb Road Pathway will improve pedestrian/cyclist safety in crossing the I-94 overpass. This proposal will help to answer questions identified in a meeting with Michigan Department of Transportation officials in August 2022. The results of this engineering study will help determine what types of improvements can be made to improve the safety of people who walk or cycle on Zeeb Road between Jackson Boulevard and the Baxter businesses on N. Zeeb.”

Scio Township Supervisor Will Hathaway said the analysis of the overpass bridge is necessary to determine what type of physical improvements the structure will support.

“The goal is to make the bridge safer for pedestrians and cyclists to cross,” Hathaway said.

The total cost of the study is $41,600. The work will be paid from the funds that State Rep. Donna Lasinski secured for this project in the form of a MEDC (Michigan Economic Development Corporation) grant in 2021.

In its proposal, OHM states:

“Phase 6 of the Zeeb Road Non-Motorized Shared Use Pathway planned to extend from the driveway near Metzger’s, south across the I-94 bridge, to the north side of Jackson Road. This proposal has been prepared based on discussions with the Township Staff and the Michigan Department of Transportation.”

As part of its project understanding, OHM said, “This project consists of determining the feasibility of extending the sidewalk south from Metzger’s Restaurant to Jackson Road, across the I-94 bridge. This study will evaluate the type of barrier required to meet the standards set forth in the Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH) as well as a conceptual horizontal and vertical alignment of the proposed sidewalk. This will require several meetings with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) as well as Township staff.”

In looking to the north end, Hathaway said he expects “to have another proposal from OHM for preliminary work on the segment to the north, where the pathway will cross the Huron River and ascend the river bank to connect with the B2B Trail.”

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