Cruising, Congregating, and Noise: Police Along Woodward Ramping Up Enforcement
Recent activity levels along Woodward Avenue have caused concern in Birmingham and neighboring communities due to increased traffic congestion, excessive noise levels and those who congregate without practicing social distancing. The City of Birmingham is ramping up efforts to address these concerns and improve the atmosphere along Woodward.
While it is not unusual for car enthusiasts to cruise along Woodward during the spring and summer months, traffic levels are exceptionally high due to vehicles being routed to Woodward Avenue during construction work on I-75. Woodward Avenue will continue to periodically serve as a bypass route for I-75 several more times throughout the spring and summer. In addition, the warming weather over the past few weekends has enticed people with cabin fever to head out for a drive during the Stay Home Stay Safe order.
The City is furthering its efforts with law enforcement and City officials in neighboring communities to address concerns. Birmingham and surrounding communities are working collectively to establish consistent enforcement throughout the Woodward corridor. While the City understands Woodward is a public street designed for significant traffic, the volume of traffic is not enforceable and the concern is the noise level of vehicles with excessive modifications. To address this, the City is working with State representatives to clarify language that will help further enforce noise level regulations pertaining to modified exhaust systems.
“I share in the concern of our residents regarding excessive noise levels on Woodward Avenue,” said Birmingham Mayor Pierre Boutros. “We are committing every possible resource to further our enforcement and to further address the laws needed to enforce this appropriately.”
In addition to increased City patrols over the past few weeks, the City has also requested assistance from the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office and the Michigan State Police to provide additional patrols along the Woodward corridor throughout the summer. Officers will continue to provide enforcement along Woodward to ensure public safety. Officers are issuing tickets to drivers engaging in illegal activities such as speeding and drag racing.
“Increased patrols along Woodward Avenue will continue in the weeks and months ahead,” said Birmingham Police Chief Mark Clemence. “Woodward Avenue is a public road. The Police Department will work diligently to ensure that all users of the road follow the laws promulgated in the Michigan Motor Vehicle Code to provide a safe environment for all.”
The City has also discussed the opportunity of lane restrictions or partial closures of Woodward with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT). MDOT will not permit a closure or lane restriction due to Woodward serving as the bypass route during the I-75 construction project and the traffic volumes it is designed to service.
The City will continue to explore options to ensure safety along Woodward Avenue while being mindful of both residents and cruisers. For more information, contact the Birmingham Police Department at 248-530-1870.