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M-22 & M-109 junction route signage in Glen Arbor, Michigan
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Former M-74
I-75 Route Marker On to Next Route:
Southern Entrance:    Ohio state line south of Erie and north of Toledo, Ohio
Northern Terminus:    Ontario provincial boundary on the International Bridge between Sault Ste Marie, Michigan and Sault Ste Marie, Ontario
Length: Updated 395.354 miles
Maps: New! Route Map of I-75
Notes: I-75 is Michigan's longest route-numbered highway, stretching from Ohio on the south through the entire Lower Peninsula, across the mighty Mackinac Bridge and across the eastern end of the Upper Peninsula, terminating at the Ontario border in Sault Ste Marie. As such, I-75 is often referred to as "Michigan's Main Street." Not only is I-75 a major north-south route in the U.S., it is equally important to commerce and travel within the state of Michigan. On the tourism side, I-75 is the preferred route for Detroiters heading "Up North" on weekends and holidays. Major back-ups regularly occur on southbound I-75 at the end of major summer holiday weekends.
  In the Metro Detroit area, I-75 is known as the Fisher Freeway from the Downriver area into downtown, then as the Walter P Chrysler Frwy from downtown northerly to the Pontiac area. I-75 is also Michigan's busiest highway, with and average of more than 200,000 vehicles passing over the highway each day between the M-8/Davison Frwy and I-696/Walter P Chrysler Frwy.
  The only route designation to currently cross the Mackinac Bridge and the Straits of Mackinac is I-75. Only two other routes crossed the Straits: US-31 did in the 1930s via the state ferries, and US-27 did in the late 1950s when the Bridge first opened.
  While several temporary routings of I-75 have existed during the 1960s and '70s in gaps between completed segments, one was longer than the others in both length and existence. Between 1961 and 1973, a rather large gap in I-75 existed between Bay City and US-27 south of Grayling. As this gap was slowly being filled (with the freeway being designated as M-76 in the interim), a temporary routing of I-75 ran northwesterly via US-10 from Bay City to Clare, then northerly via US-27 to the Grayling area. Highway maps of the era, both official and otherwise, showed this routing as "TO I-75" and it has been reported the route was signed similarly in the field (and not using the "TEMPORARY" designation used later on I-69). This route could not be posted as part of I-75 (e.g. without the "TO" signage) as US-27 between Clare and Higgins Lake was only a controlled-access expressway, with intersections at several roads, from 1961 until c.1966. After 1966, US-27 in that area had been upgraded to a full freeway.
  In the early 1960s, while the Interstate highway building boom was going full tilt, the program was also suffering a bit of a negative identity crisis. Some were alleging the program was a bottomless pit of waste for taxpayer dollars as some instances of fraud and misappropriation of funds had occurred alongside the building of hundreds of miles of new freeway across the nation. As President John F Kenney took office in 1961, he and those in his administration tried to stem the tide of negative public opinion by initiating several programs to tout the benefits of the new Interstate highway system. One such program was the the weekly supplement to Sunday newspapes, Parade Magazine, cooperating with the Bureau of Public Roads in holding a competition to select America's finest new scenic highways. In an October 1963 issue of Parade, the 22.5-mile segment of I-75 from Vanderbilt to Indian River (part of the so-called "Ohio-to-Soo Freeway" as it was often referred to then) was selected as that year's finest example of a "driver's road" for scenery, speed and safety from across the country. The award was officially called the "Parade Magazine Scenic Highway Award" for 1964, as the selection in late October, 1963 was to be awarded the following year. Unfortunately, the announcement of the selection of this segment of I-75 ended up being pushed aside in many newspapers by the assassination of President Kennedy soon after.
  New! I-75 Modernization Project in Oakland County: With I-75 being the primary north-south freeway running from downtown Detroit northerly and north-northwesterly through the Oakland Co suburbs toward the Flint area and with the highway itself dating to 1962–63 through much of Oakland Co with only spot updates and short-distance reconstruction efforts during its first six decades of service, MDOT began planning for a complete overhaul of the freeway from M-102/8 Mile Rd on the Wayne/Oakland Co line northerly to just south of the M-59 interchange east of Pontiac in the first decade of the 2000s. The FEIS (Final Environmental Impact Statement) was completed in 2005 and the ROD (Record of Decision) was received from the FHWA in 2006. According to MDOT, "The need for increased capacity to relieve congestion is driven by the growth along the corridor due to land use changes and the migration of people, services, and industry. It is a critical commercial, commuter, tourist, and local business route moving people and goods across the state daily." Funding was finally secured and work began on the I-75 Modernization Project in June 2016, which includes widening and rebuilding approximately 18 miles of urban and rural freeway and the implementation of the first high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane in Michigan. The first (northern) phase was completed in September 2017, the second (middle) phase was done in late 2020 and the fourt (southern) phase and the entire project is scheduled to be completed in 2023. According to MDOT:
The project adds a part-time HOV lane in both directions of travel in the northern 14 miles of the corridor, with an additional lane added for capacity in the remaining southern 4 miles. In addition, key components include rebuilding urban and rural freeway segments, vehicular bridges and pedestrian bridges, and ramp improvements along the corridor; additional carpool facilities; utility relocations; improved drainage (including the addition of a 4-mile-long storage and drainage tunnel with a new pump station); upgrades to geometrics, signs, guardrails, median barriers, noise walls, lighting, intelligent transportation systems, and pavement markings; and, enhanced aesthetics. The project is also making operational improvements to all interchanges between north of M-102 to north of the Square Lake Road interchange.
  New! In "State Trunkline Needs, 1960–1980," a set of maps prepared by the State Highway Dept's Office of Planning, Programming Division in 1960 showing possible additions, upgrades and improvements to the state trunkline system over the ensuing twenty years, MSHD staff recommended many changes to the route of I-75 during that timeframe, including:
  • Turning back the route of US-24A along Summit St both south and north of the I-75 freeway (at Exit 2) in southeastern Monroe Co, from the Ohio state line northerly to US-25/Dixie Hwy (modern-day M-125, which itself was earmarked for turnback as well). While the portion of former US-24A/Summit St south of I-75 was transferred to county control, the northern portion was not and is currently known by the unsigned designation of CONN US-24. (US-25/Dixie Hwy was also not turned back and M-125 still exists in its entirety.)
  • Creation of a BL I-75 routing through Monroe, beginning at Exit 11 and continuing northerly via LaPlaisance Rd, northwesterly along Jones Ave, northeasterly via present-day M-125/Monroe Ave through the city, then curving southeasterly on a completely new alignment roughly along either Linwood Ave or Greenwood Ave, terminating at the Dixie Hwy interchange on I-75 northeast of Monroe. While MDOT has reportedly been studying such a Monroe Business Loop for the last few decades, this proposal has not yet been acted upon.
  • Running the I-475 loop through Flint on its originally-proposed route from the late-1950s, which utilized its eventual route from I-75 south of the city northerly into the downtown core, but the I-475 proposal turned north-northwesterly to stay west of the Saginaw St corridor across the Flint River, then I-475 would have proceeded due northwesterly to a terminus at I-75/US-23 between the Flint River bridge and Pierson Rd. While I-475 was eventually constructed through Flint, the northern portion was greatly altered in the 1960s to its present-day route.
  • Having the I-75 freeway route veer more to the south from the M-33 interchange at Alger in Arenac Co, cutting across the northeastern corner of Gladwin Co, then northwesterly through southwestern Ogemaw Co where there would be an interchange with M-30 just north of Greenwood Rd. I-75 would then continue westerly and northwesterly into Roscommon Co, cutting through the Twin Lakes area, then continuing north-northwesterly to an interchange with M-55 about 3½ miles east of M-157, before merging back into its eventual actual route south of Roscommon. In the end, the route of I-75 was relocated out of Gladwin Co completely and run much closer to West Branch and north of M-55 from the west side of West Branch into Roscommon Co.
  • Not having a BL I-75 routing at Roscommon. This proposal was not enacted, as BL I-75 has existed at Roscommon ever since I-75 was completed through Roscommon Co in late 1973.
  • Not having a BL I-75 routing at Grayling. While, initially, no BL I-75 route was commissioned at Gaylord, such a route was created in 1986 and this proposal was eventually not followed through with.
History: US-2M-18US-23US-24AUS-27US-31M-76NOTE: This history section for I-75 includes the history of any freeway route segments which were eventually incorporated into the route of I-75, including portions of US-2, M-18, US-23, US-24A, US-27 and M-76. Look for the route marker symbols denoting the original designation being referred to at the beginning of each history entry.
  1956 (April 5) New! The first 14 miles of what would (partially) become the Detroit–Toledo Expressway were officially determined as a state trunkline highway route in southern Wayne Co, although the portion of the route eventually constructed would not open for another 2½ years. The 14 miles officially determined begin at the Huron River Dr interchange (present-day Exit 28) in Rockwood and continues northerly along present I-75 to present-day Exit 35 in Taylor, then continues almost due northerly to intersect the Detroit Industrial Expwy (now I-94) at approximately Pelham Rd, just west of the M-39/Southfield Frwy interchange.
  US-24A1956 (Dec 21) as US-24A New! The first 25 mile segment of the US-24A/Detroit–Toledo Expressway from existing US-24A (present-day Exit 2) near Erie and Luna Pier northerly through Monroe Co to Huron River Dr at Rockwood in southern Wayne Co is finally opened to traffic. Interestingly, this segment of freeway will not be officially determined as a state trunkline highway route for seven more months! While construction on the Detroit–Toledo Expwy began in 1952 and its projected opening was to have been in 1955, but the primary contractor cited cement shortages and excessive rain which delayed progress and pushed completion back more than a year.
      Additionally, as the northerly continuation of the Detroit–Toledo Expwy into Wayne Co would not be completed and opened to traffic for another two years, a temporary routing of US-24A is signed to help connect traffic back to the existing routes of US-24 and US-25. From the nothern end of the completed Detroit–Toledo Expwy at Huron River Dr, US-24A continues northeasterly along a newly-complete section of M-85/Fort St to Allen Rd, then along a "Marked and Maintained" route northerly via Allen Rd to West Rd and westerly along West Rd to the jct of US-24/Telegraph Rd & US-25/Dix–Toledo Hwy north of Flatrock. The sections of Allen and West Rds are not officially assumed into the state trunkline system, rather they remain county roads which are signed as trunklines and maintained by the State Highway Dept until replaced by the permanent trunkline route.
  1957 (Feb) New! The Detroit Board of Commerce passes a resolution asking Detroit Mayor Albert Cobo to name the proposed "Hastings-Oakland Expressway" between downtown Detroit and Eight Mile Rd on the northern city limit as the Walter P Chrysler Expwy.
  US-24A1957 (June 17) as US-24A New! To go along with with the 14 miles of Detroit–Toledo Expwy officially assumed into the trunkline system in Wayne Co a 1½ years earlier, the 24.61 miles of the US-24A expressway route are determined in Monroe Co from existing US-24A (at present-day I-75 Exit 2) northerly past Monroe to the Huron River bridge on the Monroe/Wayne Co line.
  US-24A1957 (Oct) New! The southernmost 2 miles of the Detroit-Toledo Expwy in Michigan in southeastern Monroe Co from the Erie/Luna Pier area to the Ohio state line are completed, but remain barricaded and not open to traffic pending completion of the "Toledo North Expwy"—the portion of US-24A (Future I-75) from the Michigan/Ohio state line southerly into the City of Toledo, Ohio—scheduled, at this point, for 1959.
  US-23US-27US-311957 (Oct 21–Nov 1) New! – The 1.85-mile freeway approach to the new Mackinac Straits Bridge from the south is officially determined as a state trunkline route on Oct 21, beginning at existing US-31/Mackinac Tr south of Mackinaw City and continuing via present-day I-75 to the southern end of the new Bridge. Also determined on this date is a connector between US-23/US-27 and the new approach freeway. These highways will open to traffic in 11 more days time on Nov 1.
  US-271957 (Nov 1) as US-27 New! The brand-new Mackinac Straits Bridge is opened to traffic along with its approach roadways. The highway, designated as an extension of US-27, begins at US-23/US-27 in Mackinaw City (present-day Exit 338) and continues northerly across the Bridge, ending at an interchange with US-2 in St Ignace.
  US-21957 (Nov 13) as US-2 Updated A 3.8-mile long segment of new freeway is completed and opened to traffic from existing US-2/Mackinac Tr from immediately north of Castle Rock in the Saint Ignace area to the existing route of M-123 near Rogers Park, all in Mackinac Co. While the new segment of highway does not feature any interchanges along its short alignment, it is built along the proposed route of the future I-75 running between St Ignace and Sault Ste Marie, but is signed as US-2 for now. Interestingly, this segment of highway and all of the future I-75 route through Mackinac Co will not be officially established as a state trunkline route for another five years!
  1958 (Apr 25) New! The Michigan State Highway Dept issues a map of "Recommended Numbering, Interstate Highways in Michigan," officially applying the designation of I-75 to its present-day corridor, although the corridor had been anticipated as the future route of I-75 for the past year or two.
  US-231958 (June 30) as US-23 Updated The 34-mile "Fenton-Clio Expressway," a fully controlled-access freeway linking US-23 at the Livingston/Genesee County line at Fenton with Birch Run Rd at Birch Run, is opened to traffic. The northern 21 miles of the new freeway are included in the future route of I-75 from the Flint area northerly, but the highway itself is now just signed as US-23. Official dedication ceremonies take place a few days later on July 3 at Fenton and Flint featuring Governor G Mennen Williams and at Birch Run with Lieutenant Governor Philip Hart speaking, with a luncheon following in Frankenmuth.
  US-24A1958 as US-24A New! By the end of 1958, six more miles of the US-24A/Detroit–Toledo Expwy are completed and opened to traffic in southern Wayne Co, beginning at M-85 (present-day Exit 28) just north of Rockwood and continuing northerly to Sibley Rd at the jct with US-25/Dix–Toledo Hwy. The former route along M-85/Fort Rd between the Detroit–Toledo Expwy and Allen Rd retains its M-85 designation, while the segments along Allen Rd from M-85/Fort Rd to West Rd and via West Rd from Allen Rd to the jct of US-24/Telegraph Rd & US-25/Dix–Toledo Hwy was only a "Marked and Maintained" route, so the county retains jurisdiction and all state trunkline signage is removed and state maintenance ceases.
  1959 (Jan 30) New! The official start of construction on the Walter P Chryler Expwy in Detroit occurs when 12-year-old Jack Forker Chrysler, grandson of the freeway's namesake, pulls the whistle cord on a diesel-powered shovel at groundbreaking ceremonies at near the corner of Hastings St & Macomb St on the eastern edge of downtown. The freeway, estimated to cost $100 million will run from downtown to M-102/Eight Mile Rd along the Hastings St and Oakland Ave corridors and will connect with M-150/Stephenson Hwy which continues northerly into Oakland Co. The first segment, on which construction begins today, is the 3½ mile segment from Jefferson Ave & Randolph St to the Edsel Ford Expwy and is anticipated to cost $54 million.
  US-24A1959 (May 22) as US-24A New!A "dedication" of the Detroit–Toledo Expressway occurs, according to reports in the media, signalling the opening of the southernmost 2.14 miles of the freeway in Monroe Co (completed in 1957) to traffic from the US-24A interchange (present-day Exit 2) to the Ohio state line and Ohio's portion linking to Ohio SR-120 (Future I-280) at the Craig Memorial Bridge. The southernmost 2.14 miles of the Detroit–Toledo Expwy would not be officially determined as a trunkline route, however, for nearly a year and a half (for reasons unknown at this point).
  US-271959 (Oct 1) as [Future] US-27 UpdatedAn additional 2½ miles of [Future] US-27 freeway are completed from the southern end of the US-31 Mackinac Bridge approach freeway (at present-day Exit 337) southerly to Potter Rd south of Mackinaw City. Included in the $1.18 milion project is an overpass at existing US-31 (Mackinaw Hwy) and southbound on- and northbound off-ramps along with a partial interchange at present-day Exit 336 leading toward the proposed US-31 relocation heading southwesterly toward Carp Lake. Traffic starts flowing on the new freeway — referred to as the "US-27 expressway," although it was likely not signed as such since it does not connect back to the existing US-27 at Indian River yet — as far south as the new US-31 off-ramps (present-day Exit 336) on Oct 1. The segment of [Future] US-27 freeway from Potter Rd southeasterly to Topinabee Rd is currently under construction and scheduled for completion in 1960.
  I-751959 (Oct 12) as I-75 UpdatedThe first I-75 route markers are erected along what had been designated US-24A from the Ohio state line through Monroe Co and into southern Wayne Co to the northern end of the completed freeway at US-25/Dix–Toledo Hwy & Sibley Rd north of Woodhaven. The State Highway Dept had planned to wait to sign the Detroit–Toledo Expwy as I-75 until the freeway had reached downtown Detroit, but when Ohio authorities signed their completed segment of the freeway in Toledo as I-75, the MSHD decided to post the Interstate markers at this point instead of having I-75 in Ohio unexpectedly turn into US-24A at the Michigan state line, thus causing motorist confusion. This is the first stretch of Interstate highway to signed in Michigan.
  I-751960 (Oct 5) as I-75New! – The southernmost 2.14 miles of I-75/Detroit–Toledo Expwy is officially established as a state trunkline route from the Ohio state line northerly to the US-24A interchange (present-day Exit 2), even though the freeway was dedicated and opened to trafffic over a year earlier. At the same time, the portion of Summit St from the Detroit–Toledo Expwy southerly to the Ohio state line is turned back to county control and all US-24A signs are removed.
  I-751960 Updated The majority of the route that will eventually become part of I-75 in Michigan gets its I-75 route markers installed by the end of the year, in some instances replacing the existing route designations along those stretches of completed freeway, while in others being concurrently designated with the existing non-Interstate route numbers. Those portions becoming just I-75 alone:
  • I-75: The Detroit–Toledo Expwy from the Ohio state line south of Erie northerly to US-25/Dix–Toledo Hwy & Sibley Rd in southeastern Wayne Co. (Formerly designated US-24A.)
  • I-75: The Mackinac Bridge from the southern end of the bridge at Huron St in Mackinaw City northerly across the Straits of Mackinac to the US-2 interchange in Saint Ignace. (Formerly designated US-27.)
Those portions of I-75 concurrently signed with another route designation:
  • I-75/US-23: The 14 miles of the US-23/Fenton–Clio Expwy from approximately one mile south of the M-121/Bristol Rd interchange in Genesee Co northerly to the M-83 interchange at Birch Run in Saginaw Co. (Concurrently with US-23.)
  • I-75/US-31 and I-75/US-23/US-31: From US-31/Mackinac Tr (later M-108) south of Mackinaw City notherly to the southern end of the Mackinac Bridge in Mackinaw City. (Formerly designated, in part, as US-27.)
  • I-75/US-2: From just north of Castle Rock near Saint Ignace northerly to existing M-123 in Mackinac Co. (Formerly designated as US-2.)
  1960 (Nov 11) UpdatedThe 24 miles of I-75 from US-27 north of Indian River (present-day Exit 313) to M-108/Mackinac Tr (present-day Exit 336, formerly US-31) at Mackinaw City in Cheboygan Co are opened to traffic, although this segment of highway will not be officially established as a state trunkline route for just over a year from now (for reasons unclear at this point). Opening ceremonies are held at the Levering–Cheboygan interchange (present-day Exit 326) with State Highway Commissioner John C Mackie the featured speaker and a celebration of local veterans included. This segment of freeway cost $8 million to construct and becomes the first portion of I-75 in Michigan to be opened to traffic only as I-75, and not with a concurrent route designation or first as a different route which is then later redesignated as I-75. The existing route of US-27 from Indian River north-northeasterly to Chebogyan, then northwesterly with US-23 to Mackinaw City remains signed along its existing route.
  1960 (Nov 12) UpdatedA 4.1-mile long segment of the I-75/US-2 freeway at St Ignace in Mackinac Co is completed and opened to traffic, beginning at the US-2 interchange at the northern end of the Mackinac Bridge approach (opened in 1957) and continuing northerly through a new interchange for BL I-75 north of St Ignace and merging into the existing segment of freeway that was completed and opened to traffic in Nov 1957. The project cost $4 million to complete. Most of the existing route of US-2 through downtown Saint Ignace is redesignated as BL I-75, while the portion of former US-2 along Mackinac Tr from BL I-75 northerly to the former connection to the 1957 freeway segment remains an unsigned state trunkline highway for four more days. Coupled with the freeway opening the previous day in Cheboygan Co plus the existing five-mile long Straits ot Mackinac Bridge and the portion of freeway between Castle Rock and M-123, this newly-opened section creates a 37-mile long, continuous segment of I-75 running from US-27 north of Indian River (present-day Exit 313) northerly across the Mackinac Bridge to M-123 (at present-day Exit 352).
  1960 (Dec 5)—1961 (Jan 3) Updated 2023-07 A 14.93-mile long segment of freeway is opened to traffic on December 5 beginning at the north end of the existing US-23 bypass of Saginaw at M-81 northwesterly over the Saginaw River via a new four-lane bascule Zilwaukee Bridge, then curving northerly past Bay City, terminating at existing US-23 at Kawkawlin. The new freeway is designated as I-75/US-10/US-23 from Saginaw to an interchange with the M-20 freeway west of Bay City (where US-10 now turns westerly supplanting M-20 into Midland) and then as I-75/US-23 from M-20 to Kawkawlin. (US-10 also joins with US-23 from Bridgeport northerly to the beginning of the new segment of I-75/US-10/US-23 at M-81 east of Saginaw.) The former route of US-23 from the former end of the "Saginaw bypass" (present-day Exit 153) is redesignated as a northerly extension of M-13 from there into Bay City, following the former route of US-23 through the city, and now terminating at the northern end of the I-75/US-23 freeway at Kawkawlin. (The former BUS US-23 through downtown Bay City becomes part of a longer BL I-75 routing through the city.) Road crews begin changing out the various route markers on all the affected routes on December 8, with the work being completed by the end of the month. The entire 14.93-mile long freeway segment is officially established as a trunkline route a month later on January 3. This segment of freeway becomes the second section of I-75 in Michigan to be opened with I-75 route markers posted as its time of opening.
  1961 (Oct 9) New! A short segment of the I-75 freeway is completed and opened to traffic from jct US-27 & M-18/M-76 northerly to the southern Grayling interchange (present-day Exit 254). This section of highway is converted to freeway by constructing a new set of northbound lanes for I-75 to the east of the existing US-27 dvided highway between M-18/M-76 and the south Grayling interchange, while the existing southbound lanes of the former US-27 (constructed in the 1920s) are obliterated and all southbound I-75 traffic is moved over to use the northbound US-27 lanes built in 1955. (The old southbound US-27 lanes are still evident in the present-day as an extended grassy area on the west side of I-75's southbound lanes.) The 4½ miles of former US-27 from the jct of I-75 & M-18/M-76 northerly to the south Grayling interchange are subsumed under the route of southbound I-75. A northerly extension of this short segment of freeway and a southerly connection with the new US-27 expressway past Houghton Lake would open to traffic in less than two months.
  1961 (Oct 27) New! 2023-08A project to convert the existing 7½-mile long US-23/US-10 "Saginaw East Belt" to a full freeway—it was opened in stages in 1949 and 1953 as a two-lane controlled-access highway with intersections instead of grade-separations—is completed and opened to traffic five days before its target completion date. New northbound lanes are constructed on the existing right-of-way and interchanges are built at US-10/Dixie Hwy, M-46/Holland Rd and M-81/East Washington Rd, while intersecting roads are either dead-ended or grade separations are constructed. This newly "freeway-ized" segment connects with new segments of I-75/US-10/US-23 freeway on either end, which will now make I-75 and uninterrupted full freeway from southwest of Flint in Genesee Co northerly to jct M-13 at Kawkawlin, concurrent with US-23 for that entire distance and with US-10 from Birch Run to jct M-15/M-25 at Bay City.
  1961 (Nov 16) New!The 4.6 miles of the former route of US-2 along Mackinac Tr from BL I-75 (formerly US-2) at Evergreen Shores north of Saint Ignace northerly to the intersection with the (slightly) relocated M-123 at Rogers Park in Mackinac Co is turned back to local control, four years after most of this segment had been bypassed by a new segment of US-2 freeway (later I-75/US-2, now just I-75). (One MDOT right-of-way map, however, shows that former US-2 along Mackinac Tr in the area of M-123 was turned back to county control on Dec 12, 1960, although that may be an error.)
  1961 (Nov 17, Nov 25) UpdatedThe 8.5-mile segment of I-75/US-10/US-23 freeway in Saginaw Co beginning at the north end of the "Fenton–Clio Expressway" at Birch Run (present-day Exit 136) and continuing northwesterly to the southern end of the 1949–54 US-23 "Saginaw byass" (designated as US-10/US-23 since the beginning of the year) at Dixie Hwy in Bridgeport at present-day Exit 144 southeast of Saginaw is opened on Nov 17. Instead of the usual ribbon-cutting ceremony, Gov. Swainson participated in a log-cutting ceremony to open the new highway, reminiscient of the Saginaw area's role in the lumbering era a century earlier. This segment of freeway is also officially established as a state trunkline route eight days later on Nov 25. The 8.8-mile former route of US-10/US-23 along Dixie Hwy between Birch Run Rd and the northern end of this segment at Bridgeport is turned back to county control on Nov 25 as well.
  1961 (Dec 1, Dec 4) Updated Concurrent with the completion and opening to traffic of the US-27 expressway from Harrison to jct I-75 & M-18/M-76 approximately 6 miles south of downtown Grayling, a 16.7-mile segment of the I-75 freeway is completed and opened to traffic from the south Grayling interchange (present-day Exit 254) in Crawford Co northerly to the Waters interchange (present-day Exit 270) in southern Otsego Co, with through traffic Marlette Rd between the new freeway and the existing route of US-27 to connect with the new freeway segment. The route of former US-27 from the south Grayling interchange through Grayling to M-93/Hartwick Pines Rd north of town is designated as BL I-75. The 12.3 miles of former US-27 from M-93 northerly to the Crawford/Otsego Co line is turned back to local control on Dec 4. The segment of US-27 from Waters northerly to north of Indian River is also re-signed as "TO I-75."
  1961 (Dec 18) New! The 1.4-mile long segment of former US-27 (present-day Old 27) from the Crawford/Otsego Co line northerly to Marlette Rd (temporarily providing access to the completed section of I-75 from Waters, southerly) at Waters is turned back to county control, over two weeks after the new I-75 segment between Grayling and Walters is completed and opened to traffic.
  1962 (June 5) Updated By the end of the year, I-75 in the northern half of the Lower Peninsula consists of major completed segments of freeway from Flint to Bay City, south of Grayling to Waters; and from Indian River across the Mackinac Bridge and into the U.P. The gaps in the route of I-75 are temporarily filled by a special "TO I-75" designation, which are signed starting in 1961 at the following locations:
  • TO I-75Bay City–Grayling: In order to shuttle through traffic between the completed segments of I-75 south of Bay City and south of Grayling, a TO I-75 routing begins at jct I-75/US-10/US-23 & M-15/M-25 west of Bay City and proceeds westerly and northwesterly via US-10 past Midland to Clare. TO I-75 then turns northerly concurrently with the brand-new US-27 expressway to the southern end of the completed I-75 segment (at present-day Exit 249) between Higgins Lake and Grayling.
  • TO I-75Waters–Indian RIver: A second TO I-75 designation is commissioned to replace US-27 between Waters in southern Otsego Co and Indian River in Cheboygan Co. This "TO I-75" routing begins at the northern end of the completed freeway at Waters and heads northerly along the former US-27 past Otsego Lake into downtown Grayling, jogging easterly via M-32/Main St, then turning northerly via former US-27 again through Vanderbilt, Wolverine and Indian River to the south end of the next completed I-75 segment north of Indian River. It is unclear whether the Michigan State Highway Dept ever replaced all of the US-27 shields with "TO I-75" route marker assemblies or not. A 1962 State Highway Dept Control Section Atlas seems to indicate the Waters–Indian River segment of former US-27 is, indeed, re-signed as "TO I-75."
  1962 (July 16, July 20) Updated Beginning at the northern end of the existing I-75 freeway at Waters in southern Otsego Co, a new segment of I-75 freeway opens to traffic on July 16 northerly past Otsego Lake to a new temporary terminus at M-32 on the west side of Gaylord. This segment will not become officially established as a state trunkline highway route, however, until halfway through November. The former route of TO I-75 (formerly US-27) along Old 27 from Waters northerly to M-32 in downtown Gaylord is turned back to local control on July 20.
  1962 (Aug 31) Updated An 8.8-mile segment of the I-75 freeway is completed and opened to traffic from M-32 on the west side of Gaylord northerly to the former route of US-27 (recently designated TO I-75, present-day Old 27) northwest of downtown Vanderbilt, in Otsego Co. The former 8.89-mile route of TO I-75 (the former US-27) along Old 27 from M-32/Main St in downtown Gaylord northerly to the cnr of Old 27 & Airport Rd northwest of Vanderbilt is turned back to county control and, within Vanderbilt, village control.
  1962 (Oct 25) New! The 21½ mile long segment of I-75/US-10 freeway between existing US-10/Dixie Hwy (present-day Exit 93) at Clarkston in north-central Oakland Co and the US-23/Fenton-Clio Expwy (at present-day 115) southwest of Flint is opened to traffic, although it won't be officially established as a state trunkline route for 11–21 days. The State Highway Dept had originally planned to open the entire 33½ mile segment of I-75 from M-24/Lapeer Rd northeast of Pontiac all the way to US-23 southwest of Flint, but delayed the opening of the 11½ segment between M-24/Lapeer Rd and Dixie Hwy until later in the year. The US-10 route markers are removed from Dixie Hwy between Clarkston and the Oakland/Genesee Co line, while the segment of former US-10 through much of Genesee Co is redesignated as M-54.
  1962 (Oct 31, Nov 5) Updated The new International Bridge linking the twin Sault Ste Maries of Michigan and Ontario and crossing the St Marys River/Soo Locks is completed and the three miles of I-75/US-2 freeway heading southerly away from the bridge to Three Mile Rd is also opened to traffic on Oct 31. The former route of US-2 into downtown Sault Ste Marie is redesignated as BS I-75, with 0.51 mile of Three Mile Rd assumed into the state trunkline highway system between the new freeway and existing US-2 along Mackinac Tr used as the connector between the two routes. The official establishment of the northernmost three miles of the I-75/US-2 freeway occurs on Nov 5, as does the jurisdictional transfer of the 0.51 mile of Three Mile Rd between the freeway and Mackinac Tr.
  1962 (Nov 5, 11am) Updated – The final gap in the route of I-75 in northern Lower Michigan (Grayling to the Straits of Mackinac) is filled when the 22½-mile segment from Old 27 at Vanderbilt (present-day Exit 290) and M-27 north of Indian RIver (present-day Exit 313) is opened to traffic. Additionally, on this date, the entire 66.87-mile route of the I-75 freeway through Otsego and Cheboygan Cos is officially established as a state trunkline highway route from the Crawford/Otsego Co line northerly past Gaylord, Vanderbilt, Wolverine and Indian River to the M-108/Mackinac Hwy interchange (present-day Exit 338) south of Mackinaw City. The actual freeway, however, opened to traffic in sections starting on Nov 11, 1961 (Indian River to Mackinaw City), Dec 4, 1961 (Crawford Co line to Waters), July 16, 1962 (Waters to Gaylord), Aug 31 (Gaylord to Vanderbilt), and Nov 5 (Vanderbilt to Indian River). The 21.86-mile former route of TO I-75 (formerly US-27) from Airport Rd at Vanderbilt in Otsego Co northerly to the southern M-68 jct south of Indian River and from the north jct of M-68 at Indian River northerly to the I-75 & M-27 interchange (Exit 313) north of Indian Rier is turned back to county control on this date as well. The opening of the Vancerbilt-to-Indian River segment of I-75, along with the completion of the Milan-to-Ann Arbor segment of US-23 three days prior, completes a non-stop, four-lane "Ohio-to-Mackinac Expressway" route touted by the State Highway Dept. While a few segments of the route are not yet built up to full freeway standards, there are no traffic signals on the route and only a few at-grade intersections remain.
  1962 (Nov 5–15) Updated The 33.72-mile long segment of I-75 (and, in part, I-75/US-10) freeway between M-24 northeast of Pontiac and US-23 southwest of Flint is officially established as a state trunkline highway route, although the portion from US-10/Dixie Hwy at Clarkston and US-23 has been open since October 25. The establishment is official in Genesee Co on November 5 and in Oakland Co ten days later on November 15. The remaining 11½ segment of I-75 freeway between M-24/Lapeer Rd and US-10/Dixie Hwy north of Pontiac is still a month away from opening to traffic. The 11.7-mile segment of Dixie Hwy parallel to the new I-75/US-10 freeway, formerly signed as US-10, between Clarkston and the Oakland/Genesee Co line is officially cancelled as a state trunkline route and turned back to County control on November 15 as well.
  1962 (Dec 5) Updated A 6-mile segment of I-75/US-2 freeway is completed from Tone Rd (present day M-80 at Exit 378) near Kinross to Mackinaw Trail at Dafter in central Chippewa Co. Route markers are removed from the former route of US-2 along Mackinac Tr, which will be jurisdictionally transferred to the county in 1963.
  1962 (Dec 14) Updated The 11½-mile long segment of I-75 freeway from US-10/Dixie Hwy easterly to M-24/Lapeer Rd north of Pontiac in north-central Oakland Co is completed and opened to traffic, having been established as a state trunkline route a month earlier.
  1963 (July 23) New! 2023-10 A four-mile segment of I-75/US-2 freeway in central Chippewa Co is completed and opened to traffic from M-48 at Rudyard (present-day Exit 373) northerly to Tone Rd (present-day M-80) at Kinross, where it connects with the six-mile segment of freeway opened to traffic the previous December. This segment of freeway cost $1.5 million to construct. US-2 is transferred from its Mackinaw Trail alignment onto the new freeway and the former route will remain an unsigned trunkline route until the end of the year.
  1963 (Oct) – As detailed in the "Notes" section above, the 22.5-mile segment of I-75 freeway completed and opened to traffic the previous year is given the "Parade Magazine Scenic Highway Award" for 1964, selected as the year's finest example of a "driver's road" for scenery, speed and safety from across the country.
  1963 (Nov 1 11:30am, Dec 5) UpdatedThe remaining two uncompleted segments of the I-75/US-2 freeway in the Upper Peninsula are completed and opened to traffic on Nov 1 at an opening ceremony at 11:30 am. The 47.81-mile long route of I-75/US-2 from the M-123 interchange at Rogers Park north of St Ignace northerly to the BS I-75/Three Mile Rd interchange on the southern city limit of Sault Ste Marie is officially established as a state trunkline route on Dec 5. Also on Dec 5, the former route of US-2 along Mackinac Tr from M-123 in Mackinac Co northerly to the southern jct of M-48 three miles south of Rudyard, and the former US-2 from the northern jct of M-48 at Rudyard northeasterly along Mackinac Tr to Three Mile Rd at the southern city limit of Sault Sainte Marie is turned back to county control. The two new segments of I-75/US-2 freeway to physically open to traffic are:
  • From M-123 north of St Ignace to M-48 at Rudyard (present-day Exit 373), where it connects with a ten-mile segment of completed freeway. This segment cost $10 million to complete.
  • From the north end of the existing ten-mile freeway segment at Mackinac Tr near Dafter (approximately Mile 384) northerly to BS I-75/Three Mile Rd at Sault Ste Marie.
  1963 (Dec 16) Updated A short freeway extension is completed north of US-25/Dix–Toledo Hwy north of Woodhaven, connecting into northbound US-24/Telegraph Rd south of Eureka Rd in Taylor Twp (present-day City of Taylor).
TO I-75 With the completion of this short extension, a new "TO I-75" designation is commissioned in the Detroit area: From the northern end of the new freeway extension in Taylor Twp, this new TO I-75 runs northerly via US-24/Telegraph Rd for 15 miles to M-102/Eight Mile Rd, then easterly for 9.2 miles via M-102/Eight Mile to the former M-150/Stephenson Hwy. From there, TO I-75 turns northerly via the former M-150/Stephenson Hwy routing for three miles to the southern end of the I-75 freeway just north of 11 Mile Rd in Oakland Co.
  1963 (Dec 31) Updated The segment of I-75 through Oakland Co from M-24 northeast of Pontiac, winding southeasterly through Pontiac Twp (present-day Auburn Hills), Troy, Madison Heights and Royal Oak, ending just north of the intersection of 11 Mile Rd & Stephenson Hwy is officially established as a state trunkline route and is likely opened to traffic on the same day. The portion of the parallel M-150/Stephenson Hwy from the new interchange with I-75 in Troy (present-day Exit 67) southerly to 11 Mile Rd in Madison Heights is turned back to local control. The portion of the former M-150/Stephenson Hwy from 11 Mile Rd southerly to M-102/Eight Mile Rd redesignated as a part of a new "TO I-75" (see above). In addition, with the completion of I-75 around the east side of Pontiac, a new BL I-75 routing is created to run through downtown Pontiac and replacing the BUS M-24 designation, beginning at the Square Lake Rd interchange (present-day Exit 75) and ending at the M-24 interchange (present-day Exit 81).
  1964 (June 12) New! A total of 24.55 miles of new state trunkline mileage is officially assumed into the highway system on this date, comprising three sections of the proposed I-75 freeway through the Detroit area. While a short portion of freeway is scheduled for completion within two weeks time, the entire freeway being determined today will not be fully completed and opened to traffic for six more years. The three segments include:
  • From the US-24 CONNECTOR in Taylor northerly to the middle of the Rouge River high-level bridge in Detroit: 9.22 miles.
  • From the middle of the Rouge River bridge to the eastern end of the Chrysler/Gratiot Connector northeast of downtown Detroit: 7.42 miles.
  • From the Chrysler/Fisher Frwy interchange in downtown Detroit northerly to M-102/Eight MIle Rd on the Wayne/Oakland Co line (and northern Detroit city limit): 7.92 miles.
  1964 (June 26) Updated The first segment of the Walter P Chrysler Frwy is completed between downtown Detroit at Larned St and I-94/Edsel Ford Expwy north of downtown. The southernmost 1¼ mile is designated as I-375, while the remainder to I-94 is designated as a segment of I-75.
  1966 Updated The divided highway segment of "TO I-75" running along the former M-150/Stephenson Hwy begins conversion to an urban depressed freeway, with a relocated Stephenson Hwy running along each side of the new I-75 as frontage roads. I-75 traffic (following the TO I-75 route) begins using the new frontage roads while the new freeway is being constructed in between. This new segment under construction runs between M-102/8 Mile Rd & 11 Mile Rd in Hazel Park and Royal Oak.
  1966 (Dec 28) UpdatedIn southern Wayne Co, I-75 is extended northeasterly for 8 miles from the US-24/Telegraph Rd connector (present-day CONN US-24 at Exit 35) to Schaefer Hwy in southwest Detroit. Construction is underway to connect this new segment with the Walter P Chrysler Frwy north of downtown via a new high-level bridge spanning the Rouge River.
TO I-75With this new extension of the I-75/Fisher Frwy, the TO I-75 route is relocated, in part. TO I-75 in the Detroit area now begins at the jct of I-75/Fisher Frwy & M-39/Southfield Hwy in Lincoln Park and proceeds northerly via M-39 (Southfield Hwy & Frwy) to M-102/Eight Mile Rd, then easterly via M-102 to the southern end of the freeway segment under construction along the former route of M-150/Stephenson Hwy in Hazel Park, where it turns northerly along the Stephenson Hwy frontage Rds and continues to the beginning of the actual I-75 freeway near 11 Mile Rd.
  1967 (Feb 9) New!The 10.54 miles of US-25 in southern Wayne Co from I-75/Detroit–Toledo Expwy north of Woodhaven northerly via Dix–Toledo Hwy, Dix Hwy, Toledo Rd and Oakwood Blvd to M-85/Fort St is turned back to local control, with the US-25 designation transferred onto the I-75/Detroit–Toledo & Fisher Frwys, using M-85/Fort St between I-75 and Oakwood Blvd to rejoin its former alignment at the Rouge River bridge.
  1967 (June 9) New!A 0.23-mile segment of Schaefer Hwy in southwest Detroit from M-85/Fort St northwesterly under the I-75/Fisher Frwy to the north end of the interchange (present-day Exit 43) is established as a state trunkline route to provide a full trunkline-to-trunkline connection for M-85 to meet up with I-75 once the portion of M-85 from Schaefer Hwy to Fort St is transferred to local control in five years' time.
  1967 (Oct 5) New!The I-75/US-10/US-23 Zilwaukee Bridge spanning the Saginaw River is rammed by the 550-foot freighter J.F. Schoellkopf Jr while the bascule (draw) bridge is in the down (closed) position and open to vehicular traffic. The southbound lanes of I-75/US-10/US-23 are closed and traffic is detoured via M-25 into Bay City, then southerly via M-13 back to the freeway to avoid the closed bridge. The freighter is initially left in place and not removed from under the span for fear that the bridge might collapse. Damaged to the bridge is termed to be "subtantial" in nature. Within days, southbound traffic is rerouted to share the northbound lanes on the bridge while repairs are made to the bridge.
  US-231967 (Oct 6, Nov 1) as US-23 Updated A 23.86-mile segment of future I-75 is officially established as a state trunkline highway on Oct 6 beginning at the existing US-23 (present-day CONN M-13) northwest of Bay City northerly through Bay Co and into Arenac Co, ending at the US-23 "connector" freeway leading easterly away from the future I-75 route to connect back to the previous route of US-23 south of Standish. On Nov 1, a 30-mile segment of freeway is completed and opened to traffic as US-23 from 3 miles south of Kawkawlin northerly to end at existing US-23 three miles south of Standish. The former route of US-23 from Kawkawlin to the north end of the freeway south of Standish is initially designated ALTERNATE US-23, but becomes a further extension of M-13 on Dec 1, 1968. At that point, the three mile segment of former US-23 freeway south of Kawkawlin bypassed by the new freeway—originally designated as part of ALT US-23—is then re-designated as CONN M-13.
  1967 (Dec 12) Updated A new portion of the I-75/Fisher Frwy is completed and opened to traffic in southwest Detroit. The segment begins about ½ mile beyond the northern end of the completed freeway at Schaefer Hwy, and proceeds across the River Rouge Bridge, then parallels US-25/Fort St before ending at the Clark St interchange west of downtown.
  1968 (Mar 11) New!Repairs to the I-75/US-10/US-23 Zilwaukee Bridge spanning the Saginaw River which was rammed by freighter J.F. Schoellkopf Jr while the bascule (draw) bridge is in the down (closed) position the previous October 5 are completed and the bridge is fully reopened to vehicular traffic, relieving a major traffic issue in the region.
  M-761968 (July 2) as M-76 UpdatedA 17-mile segment of freeway is completed from the US-23 freeway southwest of Standish (at present-day Exit 188) to M-33 at Alger (present-day Exit 202) and is designated as a relocation of the existing parallel M-76 route. The former route of M-76 from US-23 in Standish to M-33 is retained as an unsigned state trunkline route for more than four months. While posted and designated as M-76, this new freeway is the second segment of freeway built to fill the Bay City-to-Grayling freeway gap.
  1968 (Sept 17, 10:00 am) UpdatedA 1.3-mile, $7 million portion of the I-75/Fisher Frwy built along Vernor Hwy across the north side of downtown Detroit, is completed between 12th St (present-day Rosa Parks Blvd) and Rivard St where it merges back down into the original Vernor Hwy and a connection with US-25/Gratiot Ave (present-day M-3), although freeway-to-freeway interchanges at BS I-696/John C Lodge Frwy (later US-10, present-day M-10) and I-75/I-375/Walter P Chrysler Frwy will not open to traffic until 1971! Interestingly, the westbound I-75/Fisher Frwy overpass spanning the John C Lodge Frwy is actually the Vernor Hwy overpass constructed in 1953 as part of the original Lodge Frwy project! Additionally, even with this completed segment of the I-75/Fisher Frwy opened to traffic, the TO I-75 designation along M-39/Southfield Hwy-Frwy and M-102/Eight Mile Rd remains, as a gap in the freeway still exists between Clark St and 12th St (present-day Rosa Parks Blvd) in Detroit.
  1968 (Sept 19, 10:00 am) New!Ribbon-cutting ceremonies are held to celebrate the completion and opening of a one-mile stretch of the I-75/Walter P Chrysler Frwy in northern Detroit between 7 Mile Rd and M-102/8 Mile Rd.
  M-761968 (Nov 1, Nov 15) as M-76 New!While the M-76 freeway between US-23 southwest of Standish and M-33 at Alger in Arenac Co opened to traffic four months earlier, it is officially assumed into the state trunkline highway system on Nov 1. The former route of M-76 from US-23 on the north side of Standish to M-33 at Alger is transferred to county control two weeks later on Nov 1.
  1969 (Jan 10) Updated The final segment of the Walter P Chrysler Frwy within the City of Detroit is completed, when the segment of freeway from I-94/Edsel Ford Frwy to 6 Mile Rd is opened to traffic and designated a part of I-75. This section includes the massive interchange with the Davison Expwy (now M-8/Davison Frwy). (A one-mile portion of this new freeway actually opened early on Dec 19, 1968 between 6 Mile Rd and 7 Mile Rd in Detroit, in order to relieve congestion at that location.) In addition, the first 1½ miles of the new I-75/W P Chrysler Frwy opens north of M-102 along the former alignment of M-150/Stephenson Hwy. The gap in the freeway remains, however, from just south of Woodward Heights to just north of Lincoln Ave in Hazel Park and Royal Oak (and continues to be signed as TO I-75), while another massive interchange is built at 10 Mile Rd.
  1969 (Apr 29) New! A brand-new, two-segment, discontinuous 2.05-mile long temporary trunkline route is officially established as a state trunkline route on the west side of downtown Detroit to connect the temporary end of I-75/Fisher Frwy at Clark St with US-10/John C Lodge Frwy in downtown. The purpose of the trunkline is ostensibly to provide a state trunkline connection between the completed portion of the I-75/Fisher Frwy west of downtown and other existing trunkline routes in the downtown core. The first segment runs along Lafayette Blvd easterly from Clark St, crossing over the future route of the I-75/Fisher Frwy (now under construction) and under the Ambassador Bridge, continuing easterly to 12th St (present-day Rosa Parks Blvd), then southerly via Rosa Parks Blvd for one block to US-25/Fort St, where it terminates. The second segment begins at US-25/Fort St 0.4 mile east and continues southeasterly via Cabacier St for one block to Jefferson Ave, then turns easterly via Jefferson Ave for 0.4 mile to the merge with the US-10/John C Lodge Frwy under Cobo Hall. It is currently unclear what this trunkline was signed as in the field–possibly as another "TO I-75" routing.
  1969 UpdatedPossibly related to the new temporary trunkline in downtown Detroit (noted above), the TO I-75 designation along M-39/Southfield Hwy-Frwy and M-102/Eight Mile Rd disappears from official road maps for 1969.
  M-18M-761969 (June 12) as M-18/M-76 New! Although it wouldn't open to traffic for another year, the 5.95 mile segment of future M-18/M-76 freeway from jct I-75 & US-27 (present-day Exit 249) south of Grayling to existing M-18/M-76/Federal Hwy (present-day Exit 244) on the Crawford/Roscommon Co line is established as a state trunkline highway route.
  1969 (Aug 5) New! All ramps in the Fisher Frwy & Walter P Chrysler Frwy (I-75 & I-375) interchange are open to traffic and motorists are now able to travel between the two freeways for the first time without using city streets for the connection.
  M-761969 (Sept 12) as M-76 New! Even though it wouldn't be completed and opened to traffic for another year, the 2.51 mile segment of future M-76 freeway from M-33 at Alger northwesterly to the Arenac/Ogemaw Co line is established as a state trunkline highway route.
  1969 (Sept 15) New! All ramps in the I-75/Fisher Frwy & BS I-696/John C Lodge Frwy interchange are open to traffic and motorists are now able to travel between the two freeways for the first time without using city streets for the connection.
  1970 (Sept 17, 10:00 am) Updated The final portion of I-75 within the City of Detroit is completed with the completion of the Fisher Frwy from Clark St easterly to 12th St (present-day Rosa Parks Blvd), including an interchange with, and the first 3.5 miles of, the Jeffries Frwy (to become part of I-96). I-75 itself now exists in three completed segments (Ohio–Hazel Park, Madison Heights–Bay CIty, and south of Grayling to Sault Sainte Marie), with TO I-75 routings in between each.
  1970 (Sept 30) New! The 2.05-mile long two-segment, discontinuous temporary trunkline route on the west side of downtown Detroit that was established in April 1969, possinly signed as TO I-75, is officially cancelled as a state trunkline route, coinciding with the completion of the I-75/Fisher Frwy through downtown Detroit. It was only in existence for 17 months while the freeway was being completed.
  M-761970 (Oct 15–22) as M-76 Updated 2023-11 The 39.25 miles of M-76 freeway through all of Ogemaw and Roscommon Cos from south of Greenwood to west of Roscommon is officially officially established as a state trunkline highway route on October 15. The first 9½ miles of M-76 freeway to actually open to traffic, however, is the portion in Arenac and Ogemaw Cos from the northern end of the completed freeway at M-33 near Alger to Cook Rd (present-day Exit 210) south of West Branch on October 22. A new highway built on new alignment from the Cook Rd interchange back to the existing route of M-76 is constructed to carry traffic to and from the new freeway. The former route of M-76 between Alger and West Branch, however, is retained as an unsigned state trunkline route for the time being.
  M-18M-761970 (Nov 18) as M-18/M-76 UpdatedA short segment of M-18/M-76 freeway opens from the I-75-to-US-27 transition (between Higgins Lake and Grayling; present-day Exit 249) southeasterly to existing M-18/M-76/Federal Hwy interchange (present-day Exit 244) west of the village of Roscommon. The 7.11 miles of former M-18/M-76 along S Grayling Hwy and Federal Hwy from the jct of I-75 & US-27 & M-18/M-76 south of Grayling southerly and easterly to the new segment of the M-18/M-76 (future I-75) freeway west of Roscommon is turned back to county control.
  1971 (Dec 6) Updated In Metro Detroit, the final segment of I-75/Walter P Chrysler Frwy in Hazel Park and Royal Oak is finally complete and open to traffic and a fully-controlled access urban depressed freeway. Included in this segment is a massive triple-deck interchange at 10 Mile Rd which will accommodate the proposed easterly extension of I-696/Walter P Reuther Frwy across the northern suburbs. Until I-696 is completed, the massive "interchange to nowhere" looks rather out-of-place.
  1971 as ? – A short section of freeway opens from the the south end of the short segment of M-18/M-76 freeway completed in 1970 west of Roscommon to M-18 south of town (from present-day Exit 244 to Exit 239). The project costs $2.58 million to construct. It is unclear if this portion between M-18/M-76 west of town and M-18 south of town is designated as M-76, M-18, "TO M-18" or what. The Official Michigan Highway Maps of the time show M-18/M-76 being retained on the "through-town" routing, with no indication of what the freeway may have been designated, if any.
  M-761972 as M-76From the northern end of the completed M-76 freeway in Ogemaw Co at Cook Rd south of West Branch to M-55/M-76 west of downtown West Branch, an extension of the freeway bypassing the city is opened to traffic. The former route of M-76 from the Cook Rd interchange into West Branch becomes a newly-designated BUS M-76. Also, the formerly concurrent M-55/M-76 through downtown becomes M-55/BUS M-76.
  1972 (Oct 16) New! – The 4.08 miles of US-25 running parallel to the I-75/Fisher Frwy from the Fort St interchange (present-day Exit 43) in River Rouge northeasterly to the Clark St interchange (present-day Exit 47) in southwest Detroit along Fort St is turned back to city control. As a result, more of the US-25 designation is transferred to run concurrently with I-75 between those interchanges. US-25 now runs concurrently with I-75 from Dix–Toledo Rd north of Woodhaven to Clark St in Detroit.
  1973 (Sept 26) New! – The Michigan State Highway Dept announces that now that I-75 is completed and opened to traffic through Detroit, the US-25 designation in Michigan will be discontinued. Michigan and Ohio transportation officials have been considering decommissioning US-25 in both states since 1969. It will be five more months before all US-25 route markers are removed in Michigan.
  I-751973 (Nov 1) as I-75 Updated – The final 25 miles of M-76 freeway are completed from M-55 on the west side of West Branch to M-18 south of Roscommon. The freeway, however, opens to traffic as a completed I-75. The entire M-76 designation is "decommissioned" with I-75 supplanting it. Along the Bay City-to-Standish route of the US-23 freeway, I-75 joins as a concurrent designation. The M-18 routing, formerly running via the M-76 freeway northwest of Roscommon, is transferred onto M-144, supplanting that route entirely. BUS M-76 through downtown West Branch is completely redesignated as BL I-75. Also, M-55 joins I-75 as a concurrent designation between Exits 215 & 227. In the Roscommon area, a new BL I-75 routing begins at present-day Exit 239 and runs concurrently with M-18 into downtown Roscommon, then turns westerly to run via the former M-18/M-76 back to I-75 at present-day Exit 244. The former routing of M-76 from West Branch to Roscommon via St Helen is retained as an unsigned state trunkline (as "OLD M-76"). In addition, the "TO I-75" designation is removed from US-10 and US-27 (from Bay City via Midland and Clare to Higgins Lake) with the completion of I-75. After 14 years from the first I-75 route markers being posted along the Detroit–Toledo Expressway in Monroe Co, the last link in I-75 is completed and opened to traffic in Michigan.
  1974 (Oct 18) New! The 9.45 miles of OLD M-76 bypassed by what is now the I-75 freeway between M-33 at Alger in Arenac Co northwesterly to BL I-75 southeast of West Branch in Ogemaw Co is turned back to local control, four years after the freeway which made the route redundant was opened to traffic.
  1986 (Apr 10) Updated A new BL I-75 is commissioned at Gaylord beginning at Exit 279 south of town, running northerly via Old 27 & Otsego Ave into downtown, turning westerly via M-32 back to I-75 at Exit 282. The new route comes into existence when the portion of Old 27 and Otsego Ave is transferred from local to state control.
  1986–87 Updated – The US-10 designation scaled back from downtown Detroit to end at Bay City, removing approximately half its length in Michigan. For I-75, the concurrent US-10 designation between Clarkston and Flint is removed, while the former triple-concurrency of I-75/US-10/US-23 from Flint to Bay City becomes just I-75/US-23. A few random US-10 route markers remain posted along I-75 into the mid-1990s, however.
  1994 (June 30) New! – Two short segments of I-75 on either end of the Mackinac Bridge are actually relinquished by MDOT, thereby ceasing to be established state trunkline route segments. When originally established in 1957, records at the time failed to clearly identify jurisdictional, operational and maintenance limits at each end of the Bridge, which had the unintended affect of actually delineating "areas of dual accountability" where both MDOT and the Mackinac Bridge Authority had responsibilities. While these two segments are no longer officially-established trunkline routes, they are still part of the overall route of I-75 (just as the actual Mackinac Bridge structure has been since 1959) and jurisdiction for the highway segments simply moves from MDOT to the MBA. The two segments in question are:
  • In St Ignace, a 0.825 mile segment of I-75 from the south end of the causeway constructed in 1941 for the "first" Straits of Mackinac Bridge (construction was halted for World War II) northerly through the toll plaza to the centerline of Graham Ave extended.
  • In Mackinaw City, a 0.188 mile segment of I-75 from the centerline of Straits Ave (the southern end of the physical Bridge superstructure) southerly for 992.24 feet to the centerline of Jamet St (at Exit 339).
  1996 (Aug 1) New! – Due to a bill signed into law on June 25, 1996 (based on a federal bill signed into law by President Bill Clinton on November 28, 1995 removing the federal restrictions on speed limits on "federally designated" highways), five segments of freeway, including I-75 from Standish northerly to Sault Ste. Marie (excluding the Mackinac Bridge and its approaches), were approved as test stretches to be raised to a 70 mph speed. The speed limit on I-75 from Standish northerly officially increased to 70 on August 1, 1996.
  2016–2023 New! – The Modernize I-75 Project in Oakland Co reconstructs 18 miles of freeway, upgrading the route from its early-1960s configuration. (See details in "Notes" section above.)
Controlled Access: The entire route of I-75 is freeway.
NHS: The entire length of I-75 in Michigan is part of the National Highway System.
Business Connections:
  • BL I-75 – Pontiac. From Exit 75 to Exit 81.
  • BS I-75 – Bay City. Spur from Exit 162 easterly into downtown via M-25.
  • BL I-75 – West Branch. From Exit 212 to Exit 215.
  • BL I-75 – Roscommon. From Exit 239 to Exit 244.
  • BL I-75 – Grayling. From Exit 251 to Exit 259.
  • BL I-75 – Gaylord. From Exit 279 to Exit 282.
  • BL I-75 – St Ignace. From Exit 344 to Exit 348.
  • BS I-75 – Sault Ste Marie. Spur from Exit 392 proceeding into downtown, then easterly terminating at the Sugar Island Ferry dock.
Circle Tour: Lake Erie Circle Tour MarkerLake Erie Circle Tour in two segments:
  1. From the Ohio state line to the southern jct of M-85 at Exit 28.
  2. Jct M-85 at Exit 43 in southwesternmost Detroit to the Ambassador Bridge.
  Lake Michigan Circle Tour MarkerLake Michigan Circle Tour From US-31 at Exit 336 south of Mackinaw City to US-2 at Exit 344 in St Ignace.
  Lake Huron Circle Tour MarkerLake Huron Circle Tour in three segments:
  1. From jct US-23 in Mackinaw City at Exit 338 to southern jct of BL I-75 at St Ignace at Exit 344.
  2. From the northern jct of BL I-75 at St Ignace at Exit 348 to M-134 at Exit 359.
  3. From BS I-75/Three Mile Rd at Exit 392 in Sault Ste Marie into Ontario via the International Bridge.
  Lake Superior Circle Tour MarkerLake Superior Circle Tour: From M-28 south of Sault Ste Marie into Ontario via the International Bridge.
Memorial Highways:  New! The following Memorial Highway designations have been officially assigned to parts of I-75 by the Michigan Legislature:
  • American Legion Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 beginning at the Michigan-Ohio state line and extending north to Sault Ste. Marie..." From MDOT: "Representative Thomas Anderson of Southgate introduced a resolution to name Michigan's segment of I-75 "The American Legion Memorial Highway". The resolution was approved by the House on a voice vote Tuesday, February 10, 1969, and was approved by the Senate February 25, 1969, The Legislatures in the other states, through which the expressway passes, have been asked to approve similar measures thus giving the designation to the entire length of the Michigan-to-Florida expressway."
  • Tuskegee Airmen Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 within the state of Michigan..." From MDOT: "The Tuskegee Airmen is the popular name of a group of African-American military fighter and bomber pilots who fought in World War II. They formed the 332nd Fighter Group and the 477th Bombardment Group of the United States Army Air Forces. The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African-American military aviators in the United States Armed forces."
  • SPC Holly McGeogh Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 located in the city of Taylor between the intersection of highway I-75 and Allen Road and the intersection of highway I-75 and Pennsylvania Road..." From the Michigan Legislature: "In April 2003, Specialist Holly McGeogh was deployed with her division to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. On January 31, 2004, while returning from Kirkuk on a trip to secure spare parts, an improvised explosive device detonated underneath her vehicle, killing Specialist McGeogh and two others. She was 19 years old."
  • Walter P. Chrysler Freeway –  "The portion of highway I-75 that is within Wayne and Oakland counties..." From MDOT: "Walter P. Chrysler, whose career started with the railroads, joined the automobile industry as works manager for Buick Motor Company in Flint at $6,000 a year. By 1915, Chrysler's salary was $50,000 a year, and he was president of Buick. Later, Chrysler was the industrial troubleshooter who restored the Willys. Overland Company and the Maxwell-Chalmers Company to financial health. He built the first Chrysler car in 1924. When the Chrysler Corporation was 10 years old, its founder had parlayed his original $8 million investment into a $235 million empire. Chrysler died in 1940 at the age of 65."
  • Charles J. Rogers Interchange – "The highway interchange at highway I-75 and highway M-8..." From MDOT: "Charles Rogers was a Wayne County Road Commissioner for many years and MDOT designated a memorial sign along the expressway to commemorate his years of service as a commissioner."
  • Officer Martin "Marty" Chivas Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 located in the city of Troy at the Rochester Road exit..." From MDOT: "Troy Police Officer Martin Douglas Chivas was shot and killed on April 22, 1974 by two escapees from a prison farm in Marquette. Officer Chivas was investigating a burglary at a gas station on Rochester Road in Troy. The escaped prisoners, who had earlier kidnapped and killed a Marquette waitress and also killed a gas station attendant in Milwaukee, shot and killed Chivas as he stepped from his patrol car. Officer Chivas was 24 years old."
  • PFC Kenneth Coates Memorial Interchange – "The highway interchange at highway I-75 and Cook Road..." From the Michigan Legislature: "Private First Class Kenneth William Coates enlisted in the United States Army as an infantryman with the 25th Infantry Division, 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry, C Company. In January 1968, he was deployed to Binh Duong Province, South Vietnam. On February 5, 1968, while serving on his tour of duty, PFC Kenneth W. Coates was killed in a ground skirmish. He was 20 years old at the time."
  • John Wayne "Dusty" Marcum Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 in Genesee County..." From MDOT: "Mr. Marcum had a distinguished career as an elite soldier in the United States Navy. He was a highly decorated soldier who had been a member of the elite special operations group SEAL Team Six since 2001. His awards include the following: two Silver Stars, four Bronze Stars, a Joint Service Commendation Medal, a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, an Army Commendation Medal, a Joint Service Achievement Medal, four separate combat action ribbons, and the Purple Heart. Flushing High School had given him a special award, and the local Moose Lodge has an annual scholarship awarded in his name and honor."
  • Bernie Borden Memorial Overpass – "The overpass located at the intersection of highway I-75 and highway M-57 in Genesee County..." From MDOT: "Born on March 8, 1929, in Saginaw, Borden graduated from Clio High School, and was a three-sport athlete that helped earn him induction into the Greater Flint Area Sports Hall of Fame in 1947. He served in the U.S. Navy and married Betty Babcock on March 25, 1951. Borden earned a bachelor's degree in science in 1956 from Ferris State University, where he played baseball. The owner of Borden's Pharmacy for nearly five decades, he was truly community driven. Borden died December 22, 2017 at the age of 88."
  • Roberts–Linton Highway and Veterans of World War I Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 and US-23 beginning in the city of Saginaw and extending north to the city of Bay City..." From MDOT: "Rolla W. Roberts was a civil engineer for the City of Saginaw. He died tragically in an automobile accident at the age of 72 in Durand Hospital. William S. Linton was a member of the Michigan House of Representatives from 1887–88. He was appointed in 1919 as a member of the Michigan State Board of Tax Commissioners and was named secretary a few weeks before his death in Lansing. Mr. Lincoln was interred in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Saginaw. The Senate Resolution No 35 of 1931–32 noted Roberts and Linton as pioneers who visualized the construction of US-23 between Saginaw and Bay City."
  • G. Mennen Williams Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 in Cheboygan County..." From MDOT: "Gerhard Mennen “Soapy” Williams was a politician from Michigan who served for twelve years as its 41st Governor, 1949–61. Born on February 23, 1911 in Detroit, Michigan, Williams earned the nickname 'Soapy' because his maternal grandfather was the founder of the Mennen brand of men’s personal care products, now marketed by the ColgatePalmolive company, which made Williams an instant heir to his grandfather’s fortune. After running on a platform that supported organized labor and civil rights, Williams was elected as the 41st Governor of Michigan on November 2, 1948. He was inaugurated on January 1, 1949, and was subsequently re-elected five times, supported by a liberal labor coalition."
  • Prentiss M. Brown Memorial Highway – "The portion of highway I-75 in Mackinac County..." From MDOT: "Prentiss Marsh Brown, a Representative and a Senator from Michigan; born in St. Ignace, June 18, 1889; attended the public schools, and the University of Illinois at Urbana; graduated from Albion College in 1911; studied law; admitted to the bar in 1914 and commenced practice in St. Ignace; prosecuting attorney of Mackinac County 1914–26; city attorney of St. Ignace 1916–28; chairman of the Mackinac Bridge Authority until his death; resided in St. Ignace, where he died December 19, 1973; interment in Lakeside Cemetery."
Continue on: I-75 into Ohio - via AARoads' excellent website.
  • I-75 @ Michigan Highway Ends – photos of the termini of I-75 at Dan Garnell's excellent Michigan Highway Ends website.
  • I-75 in Michigan – from AARoads.
  • MDOT Historic Bridges pages:
    • I-75/Sigler Rd Bridge – from MDOT: "Built in 1954, this structure was one of several grade separations constructed in Monroe County for the Detroit-Toledo Expressway."
    • I-75/Conrail RR & West River Raisin Bridge – from MDOT: "Completed in 1955, this structure was the largest constructed for the Detroit-Toledo Expressway."
    • I-75/Dunbar Rd Bridge – from MDOT: "Built in 1955, this structure is one of 37 bridges and grade separations constructed for the Detroit-Toledo Expressway by June 1956."
    • I-75/Straits of Mackinac Bridge – from MDOT: "The sheer size and beauty of the Mackinac Straits Bridge still impress first-time viewers. The bridge's total length, 8614 feet, the longest in the world, combined with towers standing 552 feet above the water line, a 155 feet clearance under the bridge, and a total weight of 11,840 tons, is indeed an impressive sight."
    • I-75/International Bridge – from MDOT: "This is one of Michigan's five monumental bridges."
  • Mackinac Bridge Website – the official website of the Mackinac Bridge Authority.
  • International Bridge Website – courtesy of MDOT.
  • Zilwaukee Bridge – detailing this lofty and oft-misunderstood structure near Saginaw.
  • Mackinac Straits Historical Photos – a collection of photos from the 1950s with scenes during and just after construction of the Mackinac Bridge.
  • New! Modernize I-75 – project website from MDOT.
  • The I-75-related bridges featured on Nathan Holt's Historic Bridges website:
    • Dunbar Road Bridge – "One of two curved t-beam expressway overpasses in Michigan listed on the National Register of Historic Places."
    • Hurd Road Bridge – "One of several remaining curved t-beams on this section of freeway that are the oldest of their kind in the state."
    • I-75 River Raisin Bridge – "This relatively long plate girder bridge is significant as a large bridge on an early freeway."
    • Nadeau Road Bridge – "One of several remaining curved t-beams on this section of freeway that are the oldest of their kind in the state."
    • Ready Road Bridge – "One of several remaining curved t-beams on this section of freeway that are the oldest of their kind in the state."
    • Sigler Road Bridge – "This is an unmodified example of a historic curved t-beam, an old example that actually predates the official Interstate system."
    • Arlene Drive Bridge – "This bridge is among the older of Michigan's steel stringer overpasses that still retains original railings."
    • Beecher Road Bridge – "This relatively old skewed expressway overpass is rare for its defined curve, wide deck width, and original railings."
    • Hogarth Street Bridge – "One of the few examples in the state of Interstate freeway pedestrian walkways that retain original railings."
    • I-75 Railroad Overpass (Removed) – "An excellent, easily photographed, example of early expressway railroad overpass construction."
    • Hebron Town Hall Road Bridge – "One of a couple curved t-beams that survive with original railings in northern Michigan, this bridge has a 39 degree skew."
    • Potter Road Bridge – "One of a couple curved t-beams that survive with original railings in northern Michigan."
    • Mackinac Bridge – "The longest bridge in the western hemisphere, and the most famous built structure in the state of Michigan."
    • Dafter Road Bridge – "Featuring unusual steel bent supports, this is a smaller and more modified version of the M-48 Bridge also in this county."
    • International Bridge – "This is the monumental 2¾ mile long highway bridge in Sault Ste Marie."
    • M-48 Bridge – "This is an extremely unusual expressway overpass that features beam approach spans supported by v-laced and riveted steel bents!"
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