Mich: I-96 & I-196 designations to shift - May 1, 1963 article

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Chris Bessert

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May 21, 2004, 7:43:28 PM5/21/04
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While researching the history of I-196 in Michigan, and trying to
ascertain precisely when the I-96 (Grand Rapids-Benton Harbor) and
I-196 (Grand Rapids-Muskegon) designations were flip-flopped, I came
upon an article in the GR Press which gets me part of the way to my
answer, at least.

I've narrowed down the flip-flop of I-96 and I-196 to a period in
Summer/Fall of 1963. Hopefully more research will bring me to a
more precise timeframe or even a single date! Anyway, below is the
text of the article copied without permission for your enjoyment...


From _The_Grand_Rapids_Press_, Wednesday May 1, 1963, p.32

WOULD SHIFT ROUTE NUMBER
Mackie Seeks Int.96 Designation for
Grand Rapids-Muskegon Stretch

The State Highway Department will make every effort to change the
route number of the freeway from Grand Rapids to Muskegon from its
present Int.196 designation to Int.96, State Highway John C. Mackie said
here Wednesday.
Mackie was in Grand Rapids viewing construction with several other
highway officials from Lansing. They saw the entire length of the
$40,000,000 Int. 96 freeway being constructed between Leffingwell Ave.
NE and the Grandville-Jenison interchange.

Now Known as Int. 196

Int.196 is the western portion of the Detroit-Muskegon freeway which
replaced US16 between those two cities when it was completed last December.
The Detroit-muskegon freeway is known as Int.96 from Detroit to
Grand Rapids where the number changes to Int.196 for the remaining
distance to Muskegon.
"We have never been satisfied with this numbering arrangement,"
Mackie said. "I plan to make a formal request to the route-numbering
committee of the American Association of State Highway Officials to
approve the change so the Detroit-Muskegon freeway will be known as
Int.96 over its entire route."

New Planned to Holland

Under the present plan, Int.96 would pass through Grand Rapids on the
east-west freeway under construction, then to Holland and south to near
Benton Harbor where it would end at Int.94.
Int.96 is under construction between Holland and Benton Harbor. The
section from Holland to Grandville-Jenison will be built in the late
1960s to replace the four-lane divided M21.
Mackie said the highway department will ask that the interstate
highway from Grand Rapids to Benton Harbor be designated as Int.196 or
be given another number.
Originally, the highway department requested the Grand Rapids-Benton
Harbor route be numbered Int.67, but this plan was rejected by the AASHO
route-numbering committee on grounds it wanted to hold that number in
reserve for possible future use.
"Traditionally, the highway between Detroit and Musekgon has had one
route number and we believe the new freeway should have only one number
now," Mackie said. "Such a change will end a lot of confusion on the
part of many motorists who cannot understand why the Detroit-Muskegon
freeway has two numbers."


-------

If all goes well tonight, I-194 and I-196 and the rest of the 180-199
routes page will be up and done on the Michigan Highways website,
found, as always, at http://www.michiganhighways.org . Stop on by
for a gander, if you'd please!

Later,
Chris, who is glad to provide just that much more vindication for
Marc on his I-67 theory/sighting/hunch... ;^)

--
Chris Bessert
Bess...@aol.com
http://www.michiganhighways.org
http://www.wisconsinhighways.org
http://www.ontariohighways.org

Doug Weasner

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May 22, 2004, 12:57:58 AM5/22/04
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"Chris Bessert" <bess...@aol.com> wrote in message
news:c8m49t$4sa$1...@msunews.cl.msu.edu...
<snip>

> "Traditionally, the highway between Detroit and Musekgon has had one
> route number and we believe the new freeway should have only one number
> now," Mackie said. "Such a change will end a lot of confusion on the
> part of many motorists who cannot understand why the Detroit-Muskegon
> freeway has two numbers."
>

Who says you need I-10, I-80, or I-90 and over 2000 miles to drive coast to
coast?

--
Doug Weasner | Greenwood IN | Hasn't gone coast-to-coast yet ...
CompTIA A+/Net+ Certified Professional


Keith

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May 22, 2004, 9:23:21 AM5/22/04
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Chris Bessert <bess...@aol.com> wrote in message news:<c8m49t$4sa$1...@msunews.cl.msu.edu>...


So Bessert admits he can't pinpoint the exact date. It's about time!

Marc Fannin

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May 22, 2004, 1:12:06 PM5/22/04
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Chris Bessert <bess...@aol.com> wrote...

> From _The_Grand_Rapids_Press_, Wednesday May 1, 1963, p.32
>
> WOULD SHIFT ROUTE NUMBER
> Mackie Seeks Int.96 Designation for
> Grand Rapids-Muskegon Stretch
>

> [snip]


>
> Later,
> Chris, who is glad to provide just that much more vindication for
> Marc on his I-67 theory/sighting/hunch... ;^)

Well, I felt plenty vindicated after Stephen Summers uploaded his
Michigan find a couple of years ago (
http://nwindianahwys.homestead.com/michiplan.html ), but if you wanna
give me more credit, I'll take it! ;)

________________________________________________________________________
Marc Fannin|musx...@kent.edu or @hotmail.com| http://www.roadfan.com/

[Also posted at Yahoo! Groups GreatLakesRoads]

Chris Bessert

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May 22, 2004, 1:41:40 PM5/22/04
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Marc Fannin wrote:
> Chris Bessert <bess...@aol.com> wrote...

>>
>>Later,
>>Chris, who is glad to provide just that much more vindication for
>> Marc on his I-67 theory/sighting/hunch... ;^)
>
> Well, I felt plenty vindicated after Stephen Summers uploaded his
> Michigan find a couple of years ago (
> http://nwindianahwys.homestead.com/michiplan.html ), but if you wanna
> give me more credit, I'll take it! ;)

Yeah, I know, but here we now have a State Highway Commissioner stating
it in a general newspaper article. Stephen Summers' maps, while a
MAJOR 'roads enthusiast' find and appreciated more than words can say,
are just internal planning maps for the most part, while this has
Mackie stating publicly they asked for I-67 in the late-'50s and might
ask for it again later in '63.

Again, don't get me wrong, as Summers' maps give us a glimpse into
an area us 'mere mortals' rarely ever get to see. Newspaper articles
are widely available and archived, while Interstate numbering planning
documents are rare items easily lost or destroyed. I'm still grateful
to Stephen for getting and displaying those maps!

Later,
Chris

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