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Traffic flex route to be used for first time in Michigan on US-23 north of Ann Arbor

MDOT says innovative traffic system will alleviate US-23 traffic congestion

Flex route billboard along US-23 (MDOT)
Flex route billboard along US-23 (MDOT)

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Michigan's newest traffic management system known as the "Flex Route" on US-23 just north of Ann Arbor will be operational for the first time Wednesday.

The Flex Route uses overhead signs, cameras and electronic signs to open the inside shoulder to drivers during peak periods of heavy traffic.

A green arrow on the overhead signs will indicate when the median shoulder is safely available for use, and a red X will indicate when the shoulder is closed. The system will be maintained around-the-clock by the Michigan Department of Transportation's Statewide Operations Center.

The Flex Route will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

"Michigan is well known for our work on connected vehicles and having connected roadways will help us maintain our global leadership in mobility," Gov. Rick Snyder said. "The new Flex Route technology is a winning combination for traffic management, convenience and safety."

Ninety-two million dollars of work is being put into US-23, from M-14 to Silver Lake Road, replacing and repairing bridges, upgrading and extending ramps and repairing pavement. 

It is estimated that commuters will see up to 50 percent less travel time when Flex Route is open and operating. An MDOT spokeswoman said Monday weather was delaying the system from going live.

For more information about the Flex Route system and how it operates, including informational videos, visit its official website at www.flexroute23.com.