Detroit Public Square: Critics' Picks
Best Infrastructure Project to Not Happen
Widening I-94 in Detroit
Published: April 9, 2014
We chose this in our staff picks last year, and feel it's worth the ink again. The nearly $2 billion project would see I-94 widened one lane in each direction between Conner Avenue and I-96, and would involve demolitions, the removal of several pedestrian and vehicular bridges, and may only cause more congestion when completed. Now, we wouldn't mind seeing the planned maintenance work take place, but why make the freeway bigger? We dug State. Rep. Jim Townsend's remarks to the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments last year when he said the plan seemed like it was something out of the 1950s. It really does: At a time when the region seems to be pining for an effective regional public transportation system, why such outdated priorities? Save some money; those folks trying to get from St. Clair Shores to Dearborn will be just fine without a few minutes shaved off their commute — if this project can accomplish even that.