Grand Rapids plans to invest $11 million in road construction projects

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. --  The city of Grand Rapids is planning to invest more than $11 million this coming fiscal year to improve nearly 30 miles of additional streets.

Grand Rapids Assistant City Engineer Rick DeVries said the effort is part of the city's Vital Streets projects, a voter-approved plan started in 2014 that extended a local income tax levy for 15 years and promised 70% of Grand Rapids city streets will be in fair to good condition by that time.

"The goal was to get our streets in 70% in good, fair condition," said DeVries. "We started at 37% , and we’re up to 58% already.

By the end of June, the city will have completed preventative maintenance and reconstruction on more than 200 streets, about $13 million invested over the past year.

“We’ve got a long way to go," said DeVries. "We’ve got 588 miles of streets total, so we’ll keep at it.”

DeVries said while it's exciting knowing so many roads will be in better shape, he understands it can be annoying for people trying to get from place to place.

“I know it can be frustrating for drivers," said DeVries. "The detours and road closures, we just ask for their patience and they’ll see the results by the end of the construction season.”

The city commission will review the approximately $11 million investment plan in the upcoming months. DeVries said they will determine whether it's approved or not around the beginning of June.

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