Road diet project underway in Flint Township

FLINT TWP. — Work has begun this summer to transform a busy section of Van Slyke Road in Flint Township into a safer and more accessible roadway.

On Tuesday, the Genesee County Road Commission (GCRC) started a road diet project on Van Slyke Road between Maple Avenue and Bristol Road. The project is aimed at reducing the road from four lanes to three and adding a left turn lane in both directions.

Crews will also be resurfacing the stretch and repaving the intersection at Van Slyke and Bristol roads.

Todd Bigler, a GCRC construction engineer who is overseeing the project, said that there will be no full closures on Van Slyke during the construction phase.

“One lane of traffic will be maintained in each direction at all times,” he said. “In the first stage, we will start with the east side of the road and traffic will be maintained on the road’s western side. Then we will switch traffic when we’re done, maintain traffic on the east side and work on the western portion.”

Bigler said that the lane reduction and addition of a center turn lane will reduce T-bone collisions and eliminate left turn conflicts. He said that the road diet should also make it easier for nearby homeowners to exit their driveways on Van Slyke Road between Maple Avenue and Bristol Road.

In addition to the road diet, the GCRC will also be milling Van Slyke Road’s outer lanes, which have a thinner layer of asphalt than the middle two lanes. Bigler said that this well-traveled stretch has showed some signs of cracking due in part to heavy traffic volumes.

“It’s near the General Motors plant, so it gets a heck of a lot of traffic,” he said. “It’s not in terrible shape, but it’s not in great shape either. Once we’re able to repave it, there shouldn’t be any cracking or drainage issues.”

If all goes as planned, the $1.11 million project should be finished by Aug. 11. Until then, motorists are being instructed to proceed with caution through the roadway and to seek alternate routes if delays occur.