WALKER, Mich. — The eastbound lanes of I-96 at Alpine Avenue are back open.
The second half of the project between Alpine Avenue and Plainfield Avenue begins Thursday night, July 5, when westbound I-96 will close at Plainfield sometime after 7 p.m.
Eastbound drivers will breathe a sigh of relief after two and a half months of detours and delays. Reaction of westbound drivers is yet to be seen, but there will likely be long delays at the exit from westbound I-96 at Plainfield Avenue on Friday, July 6, and possibly the following week, as drivers figure out their alternate routes. Extra traffic can be expected on Plainfield Avenue, too, north and south of I-96.
The official detour for the second half of this project will take drivers west on I-196 from the East Beltline to downtown Grand Rapids, then north on US-131 to I-96.
The westbound closure will last until August 30.
In addition to pavement replacement and major bridge maintenance, the ramp from Plainfield Avenue to westbound I-96 will be extended, which will eventually give drivers more ramp to use in getting up to traffic speed and to merge.