MI: US-31BR Niles (was Re: M-139)
- --- In email@example.com, "Patrick Allen"
>Effective October 23, 2007, jurisdiction of the Walton Rd
> Yes, I first saw the M-139 shields between US-31 east of
> Berrien Springs and I-94 in September 2003. Now, there
> is some serious talk in the MDOT Southwest Region of extending
> M-139 all the way down to US-12BR Niles along the old US-31
> alignment. I will keep you all posted if I find out anything
> Which ties in with another post regarding US-31BR Niles. The
> last time I was in Niles a few months ago, there were still
> US-31BR route shields in the field, and I am not sure why this
> route was removed from the map this time around, but I
> understand that this route signing would be removed if M-139
> is extended south as described above. Walton Rd would then be
> turned back to the County, which was actually apparently
> anticipated in the US-31 freeway construction agreements, but
> for some reason MDOT decided to continue to hold Walton as a
> BR after it was no longer necessary to carry traffic from
> the end of the freeway at the time to US-31.
portion of US-31BR Niles was transferred and restored to
the Berrien County Road Commission. As I understand it, this
segment was under MDOT jurisdiction on a "temporary" basis
(dating back to May 28, 1980), so a traditional jurisdictional
transfer agreement was not necessary.
The description of the segment that MDOT temporarily assumed
jurisdiction over and has now transferred back is:
"Commencing on existing Walton Road at the southbound on ramp
of State Trunkline US-31/33; thence northeasterly on existing
Walton Road to its junction with existing US-31 at or near the
section corner common to Section 9, 10, 15, and 16, T75, R17W,
Niles Township, Berrien County (2.46 miles, approximately)."
It has been my understanding that the MDOT Southwest Region has
been waiting for this transfer to remove the US-31BR signing,
and that the signing changes previously discussed, which would
extend M-139 to the south along Old US-31/US-31BR, would happen
along with the removal of all US-31BR route signing. So, keep
your eyes peeled if you happen to be in the Niles area over the
next few months for some potential route signing changes.
"Late road project will start Wednesday in Niles"
"[snip]Louie Ramos, a construction delivery engineer for MDOT, said
today that Front Street (U.S. 31 Business Route) will be milled and
resurfaced from Sycamore Street to Michigan 140 beginning at 8:15 a.m.
Wednesday. The work should be finished Saturday, he said.[snip]"
Well, it seems that the local mainstream media has no idea of the
impending change, or decided not to share it...if anything, this might
be the last public mention of this roadway as Business US-31.