Multi-Year Project: Detroit Metro Airport Dingell Drive Tunnels
Get ready for traffic changes at Detroit Metropolitan Airport! The Wayne County Airport Authority is set to kick off a multi-year project. The project is to upgrade the tunnels on Dingell Drive at DTW airport. These tunnels, built back in the late ’90s and early 2000s, help support the runway and taxiway pavement above and provide access to the McNamara Terminal.
Starting next week, construction will mess with traffic from Evans Terminal to the Eureka Road entrance near McNamara Terminal. During this stage, construction activities will impede the regular flow of traffic. This will be from the vicinity of the Evans Terminal to the Eureka Road exit and entrance ramps close to the McNamara Terminal. Effective Monday, the number of lanes for both northbound and southbound traffic on Dingell Drive will be two lanes, until February 29.
After that, from March until the middle of 2025, northbound traffic on Dingell Drive will be down to just one lane. Traffic will be directed to the southbound side of the road and tunnels during this time.
What’s in store for the first project?
The first project includes enhancements to the roadway surface, lighting, ventilation, fire protection, communication and monitoring systems, electrical infrastructure, and overhead signage. Additionally, workers will address structural issues and implement stormwater collection improvements within the tunnels.
The Wayne County Airport Authority CEO, Chad Newton, thanked everyone for their patience in a news release. He said “We appreciate our customers’ patience as we work to improve the safety of our infrastructure critical to operations at DTW. We are committed to limiting the impact on our customers by working year-round to complete construction as quickly as possible.”
Where’s the money coming from?
Funding for the first phase includes allocations from the $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, ratified by the U.S. Congress in 2021. The WCAA granted an $85.5 million contract to Toebe Construction for the inaugural project in September 2023. The next part of the plan, starting in 2025, focuses on fixing up the exterior drainage and waterproofing systems of the south and north tunnels.
If you’re driving, plan for extra time because of possible traffic delays during construction. If you’re flying out, plan ahead and give yourself more time to reach your gate. The good news is that access to the parking decks and the Westin Hotel won’t be affected.
The anticipated completion date for the entire construction program is set for 2027.