(New Buffalo, MI) - Work has started on reducing a stretch of U.S 12 in and outside New Buffalo to one lane in each direction to make travel safer.
The highway is being narrowed to two lanes with a turning lane in the middle from Mayhew St. in New Buffalo to the Indiana state line. The lane reduction is part of a $2.3 million resurfacing of the highway to be done in 2021, according to the Michigan Department of Transportation.
MDOT officials said U.S 12 will remain a four-lane highway from Mayhew Street to Wilson Street before resuming to one lane in each direction to Red Arrow Highway.
According to MDOT, the redesign should reduce the number of motor vehicle crashes by more than one-half by causing drivers to slow down and having a separate lane for turning.
47 of the 157 motor vehicle crashes on that stretch of U.S 12 from 2014 to 2018 were rear-end collisions, MDOT officials said.
MDOT spokesman Jon Sytsma said new asphalt will be laid over the existing pavement so existing shoulders will be wider and safer for traveling on foot and bicycles.