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Downtown videos wrap as M-15 work starts

by Andrea Beaudoin

July 16, 2014

Cynthia Hurley and Allen Hurley from Finishing Touch Photo and Video, a contractor for Michigan Department of Transportation, expected to wrap up filming buildings in Clarkston's Historic District this week. Photo by Andrea Beaudoin
State contractors are expected to finish work this week videotaping historic homes and businesses in downtown Clarkston.

The Michigan Department of Transportation contracted with Finishing Touch Photos and Videos to record downtown buildings in advance of an upcoming $4.5 million project to resurface 8.6 miles of M-15 from Dixie Highway in Independence Township to Wolfe Road in Ortonville.

The recording crew documented existing conditions inside and outside of homes and businesses, in case any damage occurs during this year's resurfacing project.

MDOT representative Luke Arnold said old buildings may have foundation issues and makes visual documentation and monitoring vibrations necessary.

"It is just a good idea to have it done to protect homes and businesses as well as MDOT," said Finishing Touch's Cynthia Hurley.

Work included videotaping the outside of buildings as well as basements along Main Street. Homeowners and businesses were required to sign a document allowing structures to be videotaped.

Homeowners deciding against allowing MDOT to videotape their property were asked to sign a waiver to release the state of Michigan from damage claims.

MDOT and the City of Clarkston sent letters to homeowners about the process in January to let residents know the work would be done.

City Manager Carol Eberhardt said MDOT engineers understand how fragile the foundations of many structures are along the resurfacing route, and are taking measures to minimize the impact on the buildings during the project.

During the project, the work crews will monitor vibration levels, which must stay within a certain threshold.

Workers will cease any work if the threshold is reached so building foundations are not damaged.

Crews are set to remove about 1 inch of pavement from the surface of M-15. Some resurfacing and sidewalk ramps will also be upgraded to comply with the American's with Disability Act (ADA).

Sidewalk work will begin north of 1-75 near Strawberry Lane in Independence Township. Road work. Drivers have already felt the effects of construction when work began in Ortonville in June. The resurfacing work is beginning mid-July.

When the projects head into Clarkston, there will be two lanes down Main Street during weekdays.

Traffic will be reduced to one lane on weeknights and weekdays from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.

On nights, weekends, and off-peak hours MDOT says only one lane of alternating traffic will be open under flag control.

During the project, MDOT plans to maintain access to local businesses and residences, but drivers should expect delays during the project.

For more information about the project call Clarkston City Hall at 248-625-1559.