Neighbors frustrated with MLK Jr. Blvd road work

LANSING, MI. (WILX) - It’s been a week since the start of the Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard.
People who live nearby are not happy. They say police are giving out tickets for a traffic violation they can’t avoid.

Map of the MLK construction in Lansing showing closed roads and outlets

“It’s a big ole’ mess,” Jimmie Robins, who lives on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd said.“Everybody in the neighborhood is trying to figure out how they’re supposed to get out of here.”

Sides streets on South Martin Luther King Boulevard are blocked and Lansing police have been ticketing drivers for going around the barriers.

“Today, when we got up the cops, were out here giving people tickets and stuff,” Robins said. “I went to the police officer and I said how are we supposed to get out of here without breaking the law.”

Robins said he was told by the city of Lansing that residents could use the closed section of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to get in and out of their homes. But now he says the police presence has him confused.

“What we need to know is what we’re actually supposed to be doing because today they’re issuing tickets out and that’s unfair,” Robins said.

His neighbor Deb Barclay across the street agrees.

“The only way for me to get back into the neighborhood if I’m coming from this direction is to go all the way around back to Pleasant Grove,” Barclay said as she was headed out of her house. “The time into it. It adds a good 5 -10 minutes on. Not that 5-10 minutes is a lot, but when you’re leaving coming and going all day long it’s- a nightmare.”

A necessary nightmare says the city. It's doing sewer work on MLK between Moores River Drive and Victor Ave.

Public Service Director Andy Kilpatrick says they sent a brochure in the mail explaining to residents what to do.

“For residents that are south of Mt. Hope. They’re supposed to be coming in off of Rundle and then exiting making a right turn on to Mt. Hope,” Kilpatrick said.

Now that the project has gone on for a week. Kilpatrick says they are looking to make changes hopefully open up a few side streets and communicate with residents to clear up any confusion.

Lansing police tell News 10 they wrote 13 tickets today for illegal turns in the area. None of those were to people who live there.
They are asking people to obey the traffic signs to stay safe.
The construction project is scheduled to last until October second.

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