CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) - Phase 2 of the 28th Street construction project in the Grand Rapids area began Wednesday night.
Eastbound lanes of 28th Street west of Patterson Avenue to east of Kraft Avenue closed at 10 p.m. Traffic was shifted onto the westbound lanes with just one lane open in each direction.
As for Patterson Avenue, northbound traffic moved to the southbound lanes, with just one lane in each direction. There was a left-hand turn lane available in both directions of Patterson Avenue to 28th Street.
Additionally, the off-ramp from eastbound I-96 to eastbound 28th Street closed Wednesday night. Drivers will need to exit at the first off-ramp (Exit 43A).
The work promises to be bigger than Phase 1 and cause more slowdowns for the more than 30,000 drivers that travel the affected stretch of road a day.
The construction may impact travel to Gerald R. Ford International Airport from the east. That's just in time for the days the airport expects to be the busiest of the year: Thursday through Sunday.
"Avoid 28th Street," Ford Airport Deputy Executive Director Phil Johnson said. "Not only will it help solve your aggravation, it will help the folks trying to do construction as well."
To detour the construction, take Exit 44 from I-96 to 36th Street. That exit has been around since 2006, but a lot of travelers forget it's there, Johnson said, especially people who don't fly often.
He said with spring break and holiday travel, airport traffic is up.
"On a typical day, we average around 5,500 travelers both departing and arriving the airport. But you can add probably add about 10% to 15% above that. So we're talking well over 6,000 or 7,000 folks coming through the airport each day," said Johnson.
Johnson also advised travelers to plan ahead.
"You've got families that maybe haven't traveled all year until the last time they traveled for spring break," said Johnson. "So those folks, we recommend , should take even more time to prepare themselves."
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