U.S. 41 truck traffic debate rages on

The debate over truck traffic on U.S. 41 and other access roads in Marquette County was a topic of discussion again tonight in Marquette Township.

Marquette area officials were able to present their ideas to a full house of concerned residents, workers and business leaders. At the heart of the controversy is an ordinance that would prevent trucks on certain roads. But, some of these trucks deliver food, beverages and other items throughout the county. While some viable proposals were presented, residents affected by the changes say, so far, the plans aren’t utilizing all the available options.

“This is a busy piece of land and if you add truck traffic (they are saying 50 a day, but maybe that is 50 one-way so that’s 100 trucks a day), I think it’s just a recipe for disaster,” noted Kathy Peters, a concerned resident.

“County Road 595 did not get the permitting process and that is kind of what started this whole thing,” said Dennis Liimatta, Marquette Township Supervisor. “When they tried to shut down the north-south route, it pushed the traffic into neighboring townships, namely Marquette Township. And, any proposed bypasses also came through Marquette Township.”

“They are going to come down 550,” Peters added. “They are going to go past where the railroad trucks are. Ellis carries things on their trains. Why can’t they get some deal where Ellis unloads some type of container, puts it on the train and takes it straight to Humboldt? That’s where they want to go. The train goes to Humboldt.”

The planned voting session scheduled for tomorrow has been put on hold for 90 days until a solution can be reached. Officials say they are hoping for a regional plan to satisfy all parties involved.