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Woodward and 696 Complete Streets Study to Begin

Woodward and 696 Complete Streets Study to Beginoakland115 reiki

(Crystal A. Proxmire, Oct. 23, 2014)


As transit plans develop along the Woodward Corridor, one particularly sticky area is the intersection of I-696 and Woodward. Here, where Pleasant Ridge, Huntington Woods and Royal Oak meet, there are over and underpasses, bus stops, and precarious crosswalks leading to the Detroit Zoo. Main Street and Washington angle off awkwardly, and new development in the area is expected to reduce available parking and increase the amount of pedestrians in the area.


Deborah Schutt of the Woodward Avenue Action Association (WA3) understands the challenges all too well. WA3 has been working on a Complete Streets plan stretching from the Detroit River all the dinos02sidelogo3way to Pontiac. That particular intersection was so problematic though that the group was unable to offer solutions because of their budget for the project.

“Communities said, ‘we need to figure this out.’ So we started looking around for grant money to make that happen.”

Now, thanks to support from the Kresge Foundation, the WA3, and support of participants including the Detroit Zoo and the communities of Huntington Woods, Pleasant Ridge and Royal Oak, funding has been assembled to develop a plan.

Robert Gibbs will be leading the study, which kicks off on November 10th with a four- day charrette. Bob has a local urban economics and planning firm in Birmingham, Gibbs Planning Group, and has assembled an outstanding team of nationally/internationally-renowned experts including Mike Lydon, Rick Chellman, and Peter Swift.seed017_darlene_bignotti

Peter Swift, PE, has over 4 decades of experience in engineering and design, and even worked in Iraq rebuilding the country after the most recent war.

Rick Chellman, PE, has 30 years of progressive civil and transportation engineering experience.

Mike Lydon is one of the early leaders of the Tactical Urbanism movement, and has been an effective advocate for Complete Streets for many years.

Schutt said that the first round of meetings will happen in November, where the consultants will gather data and talk to the major stakeholders: city leaders, business owners, the Detroit Zoo, Michigan Department of Transportation etc.

In early 2015 there will be public input meetings, which will be announced on and on the WA3 website. Those interested in the project are encouraged to go to and sign up for their newsletter.


The plan is scheduled to be completed in Spring of 2015.

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