“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Novi in Oakland County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

Grand River Bridge

Grand River Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, January 14, 2021
1. Grand River Bridge Marker
This sign marks the location of the original Grand River Avenue Bridge traversing what was formerly the Pere Marquette Railway line. The bridge, built by the Michigan State Highway Department (now the Michigan Department of Transportation), took 14 months to construct, with work beginning in October 1924. The bridge was part of U.S. Route 16, which ran from Detroit to Grand Haven. Jurisdiction of the road and bridge was transferred to the Road Commission for Oakland County (RCOC) after the construction of the I-96 expressway.

The bridge was constructed in part by the State Force Account Program, which involved the use of state prison inmates as laborers. Approximately 700 inmates worked on state highway projects during the construction season of 1925-1926. Two men died during the construction of the Grand River bridge.

The bridge was a three-span, reinforced "camelback" girder structure, supported by four piers. It measured 146 feet, nine inches long and 48 feet wide. The original bridge has a 30-foot roadway with 6-foot sidewalks on each side. It included pedestrian stairways down to the Novi train station, located
Grand River Bridge and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, January 14, 2021
2. Grand River Bridge and Marker
adjacent to the bridge. At the time, the station saw considerable passenger rail service.

RCOC replaced the bridge in 2003 because of the deteriorated condition of the original structure. The new bridge retains the distinction of having the longest span of an RCOC-owned bridge in Oakland County.

Sign erected in 2003 by the Road Commission for Oakland County
Richard G. Skarritt, Chairman
Rudy D. Lozano, Vice-Chairman
Larry P. Crake, Commissioner
Brent O. Bair, Managing Director
Gerald M. Holmberg, PE, Deputy Managing Director/County Highway Engineer

Erected 2003 by Road Commission for Oakland County.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Bridges & Viaducts.
Location. 42° 28.904′ N, 83° 28.809′ W. Marker is in Novi, Michigan, in Oakland County. Marker is on Grand River Avenue 0.2 miles west of Novi Road, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 43963 Grand River Avenue, Novi MI 48375, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Novi's Crucial Crossing (here, next to this marker); Approaching "Novi Corners" (approx. ¼ mile away); Novi Cemetery (approx. 0.4 miles away); High Performance Legend (approx.
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1.3 miles away); Novi Township Hall (approx. 1.3 miles away); A Piece of Novi's History / The Fuerst Farmstead (approx. 1.3 miles away); Sharing the Bounty (approx. 1.7 miles away); Pavilion Shore Park (approx. 2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Novi.
Also see . . .  Grand River Avenue Bridge. Information about and photos of the original bridge on website. (Submitted on January 18, 2021, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 18, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 18, 2021, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. This page has been viewed 47 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on January 18, 2021, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan.
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Mar. 6, 2021