Interstate 475 and 496 in Michigan
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Interstate 475 or I -475 is an Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Michigan. The interstate bypasses the town of Flint, not far north of Detroit. The highway is 27 kilometers long.
I-475 at Flint.
South of Flint, I-475 branches off from Interstate 75, the interstate highway from Detroit to Sault Ste. Mary. The highway is then called the Buick Freeway and has 2×2 lanes. One first passes through the southern neighborhoods of the city and then crosses Interstate 69 through a symmetrical 4-level stack interchange. I-69 runs from Lansing to Port Huron. The highway is sunken along the center of Flint with 2×3 lanes. Further north, the road narrows again to 2×2 lanes and veers west before rejoining I-75.
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As early as June 30, 1958, Interstate 75 through Flint opened to traffic. In fact, this was a western bypass of the city, it did not open up the center. To that end, I-475 was included in the Interstate Highways plan. Originally, I-475 was planned a little longer to US 23, to provide quick access to downtown Flint from US 23 as well.
In addition to downtown Flint, an important reason for building I-475 was the huge factory of automaker Buick, also known as Buick City, which was located on the route north of the center. Construction on I-475 began in the early 1970s, and in the fall of 1973, the northern and southern portions of I-475 opened to traffic. The southern portion opened from I-75 to the stack interchange with I-69 at Downtown Flint, the northern portion opened from Saginaw Street to I-75 north of Flint. Saginaw Street was Flint’s main street at the time, running north-south from downtown. The central portion of the freeway between I-69 and Saginaw Street opened relatively late, not until the summer of 1981.
Buick City was extensively upgraded at the time to compete with Japanese cars. I-475 was originally called the Buick Freeway but was renamed the UAW Freeway in 1982. UAW is an abbreviation for the United Auto Workers union. The Buick factory was decommissioned in 2010.
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|Exit 0 I-75 (South)||Exit 6 I-69||10 km||00-1x-1973|
|Exit 13 Saginaw Street||Exit 16 I-75||5 km||00-1x-1973|
|Exit 6 I-69||Exit 13 Saginaw Street||11 km||00-0x-1981|
The highway is not very busy and is well over capacity. There are 26,000 vehicles from I-75 onto I-475 before increasing to 72,000 vehicles near downtown Flint. North of it, it drops again to 24,000 at the far end of the highway.
Interstate 496 in Michigan
Interstate 496 or I -496 is an Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Michigan. The highway forms an east-west route in the capital Lansing and is 19 kilometers long.
I-496 in Lansing.
The interstate begins on the west side of town, at an interchange with Interstate 69 / Interstate 96. The highway then heads east and passes through the western quarters of the capital. The road is sunken along the center of Lansing and has 2×2 lanes. One then reaches US 127, after which I-496, double -numbered with US 127, runs to Interstate 96. US 127 runs from Jackson to Mount Pleasant.
The Interstate Highways plan included a southern Lansing bypass (I-96) and a downtown route (I-496). Several car factories were located around the center of Lansing, including Oldsmobile and the REO Motor Car Company. In addition, there were several General Motors production lines.
Construction on I-496 began quite early because of Lansing’s industrialization during that period. In 1963 the first section of I-496 opened, this was the north-south section that coincided with US 127 from East Lansing to I-96. In 1968, the western portion opened from I-69/96 to the west end of downtown Lansing. Then in 1970 the section through downtown opened, completing I-496.
|Exit 8 US 127 (north)||Exit 12 I-96 / US 127 (south)||6 km||20-12-1963|
|Exit 0 I-69/96||Exit 5 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard||8 km||22-10-1968|
|Exit 5 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard||Exit 8 US 127 (north)||5 km||18-12-1970|
The highway is not very busy, the western part has 30,000 vehicles, which increases to 67,000 near the center. The double numbering with US 127 has 58,000 vehicles.