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M-61 (Michigan highway)

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M-61 marker

M-61
M-61 highlighted in red
Route information
Maintained by MDOT
Length: 62.276 mi[2] (100.224 km)
Existed: c. July 1, 1919[1] – present
Major junctions
West end: M-115 in Marion
 

M-66 near Marion
US 127 in Harrison
M-18 in Gladwin
M-30 in Wooden Shoe Village

I-75 near Standish
East end: US 23 in Standish
Location
Counties: Osceola, Clare, Gladwin, Bay, Arenac
Highway system
M-60 M-62

M-61 is a state trunkline highway in the US state of Michigan that runs between Marion and Standish. The highway runs along the boundary area between Northern Michigan and Central Michigan in the Lower Peninsula. M-61 runs through rural forestland connecting several smaller communities together as it connects M-115, US Highway 127 (US 127), Interstate 75 (I-75) and US 23. Less than 10,000 vehicles a day use various segments of the roadway on average.

The trunkline was first designated along a portion of its current alignment by 1919. M-61 was extended in segments through 1940, with a truncation at the end of the 1950s. One change in routing in the 1970s resulted in the current routing of the highway.

Route description[edit]

M-61 starts in eastern Osceola County south of Marion at an intersection with M-115. It runs eastward and meets M-66 before crossing into Clare County. The highway runs along the boundary between the regions of Northern and Central Michigan through forest land and crosses the Muskegon River en route to Harrison. There it follows Main Street into town to an intersection with 1st Street near Budd Lake. M-61 turns south at the intersection and joins the business loop of US 127 (Bus. US 127) through town. Bus. US 127/M-61 follows Clare Avenue south of the city to exit 170 on the US 127 freeway. The business loop ends, and M-61 turns east along Gladwin Road.[3][4]

The highway passes south of Wiggins Lake as it approaches the junction with M-18 in Gladwin. The two highways run concurrently on Cedar Avenue for approximately ten blocks through downtown. M-61 leaves town on the east side near the airport. The highway continues eastward to a junction with M-30 (Meridian Road) in White Star on the west banks of the Smallwood Lake section of the Tittabawassee River. The highway crosses the river and runs through Wooden Shoe Village as it continues through the Au Sable State Forest, crossing extreme northern Bay County. The trunkline crosses into Arenac County before meeting I-75 and US 23 in Arenac County near Standish.[3][4]

The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) maintains M-61 like all other state trunkline highways in the state. As a part of these maintenance responsibilities, the department tracks the volume of traffic along its roadways using a metric called average annual daily traffic (AADT). This is a measurement of the traffic along a segment of roadway for any average day of the year. The highest traffic level for M-61 in MDOT's 2009 surveys was 9,257 vehicles per day along the Harrison business loop. The lowest AADT was 981 vehicles daily between the Osceola–Clare county line and the Muskegon River crossing.[5] No section of M-61 has been added to the National Highway System,[6] a network of roads important to the country's defense, economy and mobility.[7]

History[edit]

On July 1, 1919, when the rest of the state highway system was first signed, M-61 ran between M-18 at Gladwin to M-30 at White Star.[1] A decade later in 1929, M-61 was extended south to Winegars along M-30 and then northeasterly zig-zagging through Highwood and Bentley to Standish.[8][9] This eastern extension was straightened in 1932, bypassing the route south through Winegars and Bentley to use a direct course between White Star and Standish. At the same time, a second, discontinuous section of M-61 was created when a section of the contemporary M-63 was redesignated M-61 between US 131 at Tustin and M-115 near Marion. At the same time, additional county roads were upgraded to state highways, extending the western M-61 to US 127 in Harrison.[10][11] The gap between Harrison and Gladwin was eliminated in 1940 when the roadway was built between the two towns.[12][13] At the end of the 1950s, M-61's designation was removed between M-115 and US 131.[14][15] The western end was realigned in 1974 to bypass Marion, shortening the route of M-61.[16][17]

Major intersections[edit]

County Location mi[2] km Destinations Notes
Osceola Middle Branch Township 0.000 0.000 M-115 – Cadillac, Clare
0.921 1.482 M-66 – Lake City, Ionia
Clare Harrison 18.663 30.035
Bus. US 127 north
Northern end of Bus. US 127 concurrency
Hayes Township 21.322–
21.343
34.314–
34.348
US 127 – Grayling, Clare

Bus. US 127 ends
Southern end of Bus. US 127 concurrency at exit 170
Gladwin Gladwin 35.007 56.338 M-18 south – Beaverton Western end of M-18 concurrency
35.944 57.846 M-18 north – Houghton Lake Eastern end of M-18 concurrency
BuckeyeHay township line 41.949 67.510 M-30 (Meridian Road) – West Branch, Midland
Bay
No major junctions
Arenac Lincoln Township 59.422–
59.459
95.630–
95.690
I-75 – Mackinac Bridge, Saginaw Exit 190 on I-75
Standish 62.276 100.224 US 23 / LHCT – Alpena, Saginaw Road continues east as Main Street/Pine River Road
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Michigan State Highway Department (July 1, 1919). State of Michigan (Map). Scale not given. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. Lower Peninsula sheet. OCLC 15607244. 
  2. ^ a b Michigan Department of Transportation & Michigan Center for Shared Solutions and Technology Partnerships (2009). MDOT Physical Reference Finder Application (Map). Michigan Department of Transportation. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Michigan Department of Transportation (2010). Uniquely Michigan: Official Department of Transportation Map (Map). c. 1:975,000. Lansing: Michigan Department of Transportation. §§ I9–I11. OCLC 42778335, 639960603. 
  4. ^ a b Google (March 9, 2011). "Overview Map of M-61" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved March 9, 2011. 
  5. ^ Bureau of Transportation Planning (2008). "Traffic Monitoring Information System". Michigan Department of Transportation. Retrieved March 9, 2011. 
  6. ^ Michigan Department of Transportion (April 23, 2006). National Highway System, Michigan (PDF) (Map). Lansing: Michigan Department of Transportation. Retrieved October 7, 2008. 
  7. ^ Natzke, Stefan; Neathery, Mike & Adderly, Kevin (June 20, 2012). "What is the National Highway System?". National Highway System. Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved July 1, 2012. 
  8. ^ Michigan State Highway Department (May 1, 1929). Official Highway Service Map (Map). [c. 1:810,000]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. OCLC 12701195, 79754957. 
  9. ^ Michigan State Highway Department & H.M. Gousha (January 1, 1930). Official Highway Service Map (Map). [c. 1:810,000]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. OCLC 12701195, 79754957. 
  10. ^ Michigan State Highway Department & Rand McNally (April 1, 1932). Official Michigan Highway Map (Map). [c. 1:840,000]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. § I9. OCLC 12701053. 
  11. ^ Michigan State Highway Department & Rand McNally (October 1, 1932). Official Michigan Highway Map (Map). [c. 1:840,000]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. § I9. OCLC 12701053. 
  12. ^ Michigan State Highway Department & Rand McNally (July 15, 1940). Official Michigan Highway Map (Map) (Summer ed.). [c. 1:850,000]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. §§ I10–I11. OCLC 12701143. 
  13. ^ Michigan State Highway Department & Rand McNally (December 1, 1940). Official Michigan Highway Map (Map) (Winter ed.). [c. 1:850,000]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. §§ I10–I11. OCLC 12701143. 
  14. ^ Michigan State Highway Department (1958). Official Highway Map (Map). [c. 1:918,720]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. §§ I9–I10. OCLC 12701120, 51856742.  (Includes all changes through July 1, 1958)
  15. ^ Michigan State Highway Department (1960). Official Highway Map (Map). [c. 1:918,720]. Lansing: Michigan State Highway Department. §§ I9–I10. OCLC 12701120, 81552576.  (Includes all changes through July 1, 1960)
  16. ^ Michigan Department of State Highways and Transportation (1974). Michigan, Great Lake State: Official Transportation Map (Map). c. 1:918,720. Lansing: Michigan Department of State Highways and Transportation. §§ I9–I10. OCLC 12701177, 83138602. 
  17. ^ Michigan Department of State Highways and Transportation (1975). Michigan, Great Lake State: Official Transportation Map (Map). c. 1:918,720. Lansing: Michigan Department of State Highways and Transportation. §§ I9–I10. OCLC 12701177, 320798754. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Bing / Google

KML is from Wikidata
  • M-61 at Michigan Highways
  • M-61 at Michigan Highway Ends