The Michigan Transportation Planning Association hosts an annual conference to discuss topics of interest to its members. This year, our own CEO & President, Jim McBryde teamed up with Jim Wheeler, President of Greater Gratiot Development Inc. (GGDI), to present the results of a US-127 impact study completed earlier this year.
Related: Meet the MMDC Team
The US-127 study was commissioned to complete late last year by the East Michigan Council of Governments (EMCOG) and collected both quantitative and qualitative data related to the 16-mile gap of limited access highway between St. John’s and Ithaca. Both the safety and economic development challenges this stretch of US-127 poses on surrounding areas was identified and action steps to reduce these barriers presented.
The presentation itself was well-received and provided an opportunity for both MMDC and GGDI to raise awareness about the impact our roads and travel systems play when it comes to economic development and growth. It also allowed both CEOs to uniquely highlight the regions they represent and advocate for advancement on behalf of the companies and businesses represented by our individual organizations.
The study presented concluded that US-127 plays a crucial role in north-south travel in Central Michigan and that current evidence indicates upgrading the 16-mile stretch in question; however, given the cost to upgrade the entire 16-mile segment, the opportunity to raise awareness through presentations such as this may prove even more valuable as innovative, cost-effective solutions are sought out.
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