By LINDA LOBECK
IRON MOUNTAIN - The Iron Mountain City Council weighed in on the Dickinson County Road Commission's intention to close the Lake Antoine Road to truck traffic during the spring break up with the consensus being that they were against this plan.
Mayor Bruce Rosen told the council members at Monday's meeting that he had taken a ride on the road with Jim Harris of the DCRC and Denny Olson concerning the condition of the road right now. The road is scheduled to be redone this year, possibly in September. But Rosen noted they told him there are some scheduling issues.
"They (DCRC) would like our approval of this. They want to close the road to semis during the break up to try and extend the road to the spring or fall when it is scheduled to be redone. If they don't, the road will become impassable by the end of the spring break up," Rosen said.
After riding along the road, Rosen noted that there are already some very deep ruts. The road would be closed approximately 38-40 days.
If this happens, the truck traffic would then go through Iron Mountain on Stephenson Avenue/U.S. 2
"They are hoping that the road can be redone this year, but they don't know yet if it will happen," Rosen said.
Councilman Bob Moraska said he was concerned with truck traffic coming through Iron Mountain again and thought the passing of the road millage was so that the Lake Antoine Road would get resurfaced.
"If we start letting big trucks on the streets again in our downtown it's going to be a mess," noted Councilman Dale Alessandrini.
Councilman Collin Jacobetti added that regardless of what the city does, the traffic is coming to the downtown if the Road Commission closes Lake Antoine Road.
"We did have an understanding that it (Lake Antoine Road) would be done in a timely fashion. We don't want all those trucks coming through Iron Mountain creating a condition that is less safe and tearing up our roads in town. There is no advantage to us in agreeing with this," Moraska said.
Alessandrini agreed. "I don't want to see the trucks coming through the city. I don't endorse their mishap - I don't think it's in the best interest of the city of Iron Mountain."
Although Jacobetti agreed that the road is in bad shape, he felt that the Road Commission could stretch the life of Lake Antoine Road for 6-8 months with some maintenance done to it.
"I'm against traffic coming downtown from a safety perspective for pedestrians in the city. My only objection is due to the traffic problems that the trucks cause. The Lake Antoine Road is in bad shape already - how much worse can it get," Jacobetti asked.
Councilman Ted Corombos felt the issue was that the truck traffic was going to come through the city anyway regardless of whether the city endorsed the action.
Council member Kay Villa noted she agreed with both Moraska and Jacobetti on this issue. She felt that with the truck traffic going through the city it would be scary to walk the streets.