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MDOT rejects village speed reduction request

November 27, 2012
By SCOTT VIAU - DMG writer ( , The Daily Mining Gazette

ONTONAGON - The Ontonagon Village council Monday discussed the letter from the Michigan Department of Transportation it received regarding lowering the speed limit on M-64 and M-38 within the village. As of now, the speed limit is currently 45 mph. The council would like to see that decreased to 35 mph.

According to the letter the council received, it was determined that the current posted speed limit has been safe with few crashes. The council has the opportunity to request a speed study be done, but that could result in the speed limit being increased instead of decreased.

"I don't know if (the speed study) is going to help," said Village Manager Joseph Erickson.

Article Photos

Scott Viau/Daily Mining Gazette
From left, Ontonagon Village Clerk/Treasurer Marcia Aho-Black, President Bill Johnson and Village Manager Joseph Erickson listen to opinions about the Michigan Department of Transportation’s response letter to their concerns about decreasing the speed limit on the M-64 and M-38 corridor.

The request for the installation of a traffic light at the U.S. 45 intersection in Ontonagon was also determined unlikely for approval.

Also discussed at the meeting was the demolition of a building at the corner of Michigan and Quartz Streets. The building was obtained by the village in 1998 and has been mainly used for storage.

The building has deteriorated over the years and is currently unrepairable.

Erickson said there were two ways to go about removing the building. One is to request grant funds and the other is direct demolition through the Michigan Land Bank. Erickson chose to go with the latter.

"We'll have some paperwork to do. Just proof that it's our property, when it was acquired and that we hold the title to it and then give them permission to remove the structure," Erickson said.

He added that the decision should be made in December, and if approved, the building would be torn down in the spring.

"Probably April at the earliest," Erickson said.

Once the building is torn down, a parking space will be built.

Also heard at the meeting was the manager's report regarding:

the "lame duck Legislature" starting Wednesday in Lansing.

approval of the street closure permits by MDOT for Hometown Christmas.

new radios installed.



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