Eight Mile Road Improvements Get Tri-Party Funds
Novi city officials approved funding for the project, which will not include off-road paths to connect neighborhoods to Maybury State Park, among other destinations.
While a project to improve Eight Mile Road from Beck to Napier will include bike lanes on both sides, off-road paths aren't part of the plan, Novi city manager Clay Pearson said during Monday's city council meeting.
Though officials approved the allocation of $161,697 in tri-party road funds for the project, Mayor Pro Tem David Staudt and council member Andrew Mutch were disappointed that pedestrian paths are not on the table. Staudt called them "a critical part of our long term plan" for the area and said he is "definitely looking for further direction from staff" and information about the cost of installing the paths.
Mutch noted that Northville city and township have stepped up to work on gaps in paths on the east side of Beck Road, which puts the onus on Novi.
"Getting a connection to Maybury State Park would really be a big win for residents in our community," he said. "We have a state park on our border, and right now, the only way you can get there is to get in your car and drive."
During public comment, resident Jeff Beno said he and others have shared their concerns with the Walkable Novi committee. He noted the bike lanes that are part of the project aren't sufficient for younger bike riders or pedestrians.
According to a council memo, the project will include additional turn lanes, mid-block pedestrian crossings near Garfield Road and ITC Community Sports Park, and pedestrian improvements at Beck Road.
Novi officials in December received more than $205,000 toward the project, thanks to unclaimed tri-party funds from the Road Commission for Oakland County. Monday's approval brings the city's local match to $523,428, Pearson said. The project is set to be bid in May.