Jun 16-09

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2009: June: Jun 16-09
Block #1 is bricked    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Mary Drew
Road work ahead    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Mary Drew
Torn up street    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Mary Drew

Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 07:33 am:

A little over a month ago, we featured the detour with the Houghton street project beginning and today we have an update on the progress being made. We begin with a shot of the first block, bricks already in place. It shows how nice it's all going to be once the project is complete. That photo is taken from just in front of the Downtowner Motel, looking down Sheldon Avenue.

The next two shots are a little closer to the second block work, which you can see is well underway. It's a big project digging out all the old street and sidewalks, hauling in the new sand and leveling it for the next phase, which is the placement of the bricks. If you've done any brick paving yourself, you know it's just like putting together a puzzle, only rather than a picture, you're creating a pattern that you follow throughout.

I have to say, it felt kind of strange to cross the street by the Ambassador and not have to look for oncoming cars. The only traffic you encounter in these two blocks right now, are the workers moving about and heavy equipment down the block. Before you know it, there'll be cars driving over those bricks, heading north once again.

Don't forget, during this construction project, all the downtown businesses are OPEN and it's not that difficult to get to them using the side streets off Montezuma Ave. and Lake Street. There's ample parking under and on the deck, along with parking on Sheldon Avenue wherever the construction hasn't quite reached yet. So be sure to patronize and support the local downtown businesses! Here's a repeat of the links containing project information and the detour routes from our story in May:

MDOT - US41 - Houghton
City of Houghton
MTU Detour Information for Summer

Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 08:12 am:

I love brick-layed streets! Brings back days from the past. Plus the noise from car tires. They are just classy.

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 08:27 am:

Very cool! It's gonna look great!

By D. Clark (Dcclark) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 08:44 am:

I really do like the look of the pavers - I can't wait for the streets to open again so that I can try them out!

By J T (Jtinchicago) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 09:01 am:

Is Sheldon Avenue to become a pedestrian walkway and no longer for vehicle traffic?

If not, and the bricks are exposed to the salt, water, heavy truck loading and freezing Houghton temperatures, then the residents of Houghton will quickly find out why the bricks were not a good choice for a vehicle roadway.


By mickill mouse (Ram4) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 09:05 am:

Even though it is going to beautiful when it is all done, I just wonder what it is going to be like when all those logging trucks, loaded and not loaded, continue to travel over them all the time. I am quite sure all of that was taken into consideration. It will be nice to see it all done.

Today is my brothers birthday and he would have been 55 years old. He passed away at 19 yrs. old in 1973 and I still miss him so much.

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 09:30 am:

All one has to do is look at the work that was done on 6th street in Calumet and especially at the corner of 6th and Pine to see that brick pavers, as long as they are taken care of properly, will last a very long time.

Although what a mess in downtown Houghton until they get it done; how is the traffic around there, a nightmare or flowing smoothly??

By D. Clark (Dcclark) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 09:34 am:

Capt. Paul -- in my opinion, the traffic is working surprisingly well. The major detour is Sharon Ave., which works fine. The more direct detour is Montezuma, which has been made a 2-way street for the duration -- it's narrow but doable. There is even talk of keeping it 2-way after construction is done (but I'm sure the downtown businesses wouldn't like being bypassed like that). The only weird parts are the new stoplight for those who want to go west onto M-26 -- their lane crosses those who are coming from M-26 onto the bridge, and you get some long backups as a result.

One last reminder -- bikes belong on the road, even during construction! Please be careful and look out for them, especially when changing lanes. I nearly got pushed off the bridge by some idiot who merged without looking last week.

By FJL (Langoman) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 09:51 am:

In my opinion narrow tire bikes on brick roads may not be the safest route to travel.......

By Paul H. Meier (Paul) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 10:20 am:

Once upon a time there were railroads in the Copper Country that paid taxes and took care of their own rights of way. Back then those log trucks could and did transfer their loads to freight cars in places like Mohawk, Gay, and Lake Linden. One didn't see too many log trucks in downtown Houghton and Hancock. But we had progress and now tax payers foot the bills and dodge the trucks.

By Bob Williams (Wabbit) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 11:10 am:

Paul H. Meier...yes and we all know what happened to the railroad line from Houghton to Arnheim.

By walter torola (Centtinal) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 12:13 pm:

I had overheard a statement one time, "I don't want a train coming through my city". Too bad, tourist dollars, logging and what ever else would come with it.What is the saying, Build it and it will come.

By Shirley Waggoner (Shirlohio) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 01:30 pm:

Sincere condolences to you, Mickill. What a terribly sad thing, losing your brother at such a young age. May we never forget all those who have touched our lives! And may God give you comfort today and every day.

By mickill mouse (Ram4) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 01:30 pm:

Capt. Paul said look at Calumet and see how good the pavers are holding up. I really do not think that Calumet has as much traffic as Houghton and/or downtown Houghton will have. I do not recall ever seeing a logging truck, loaded or not, go down 5th and 6th street in Calumet. BUT. it will look good when it is done. ;O)

By J T (Jtinchicago) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 01:40 pm:

6th Street in Calumet is not a thoroughfare like Sheldon Avenue is in Houghton. Vehicle weight and traffic in Calumet is "light" at best.

If the brick road is not highly crowned then water will pocket. The excess water makes for extended stopping distances in the winter.

Hopefully, with all the local Civil engineering skills available to the City of Houghton, Sheldon Avenue will perform in the winter as well as can be expected. From here, the brick road looks more artistic than locally practical.


By Alex "UP-Goldwinger" (Alex) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 02:07 pm:

With Houghton being home to MTU, I'm surprised that they haven't figured out a way to make the traffic "hover" over the bricks :)

By Michael Du Long (Mikie) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 05:36 pm:

Berkley has a brick scape at twelve and Coolidge. What a nightmare. In the winter the plows pull the bricks up and every spring the intersection is messed up. I think it will be a big mistake to have the roadway bricked.

By dan belo (Djbelo) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 06:01 pm:


By DEAN SCHWARTZ SR. (Lulu) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 07:10 pm:

There are porions of Michigan Ave. near where old Tiger stadium WAS, that have some "old" brick pavers still there. I recall going to ball games there back in the "50's" and crossing Michigan ave. They still look good. I even tried to pull one up to take home , no such luck. They seen to be a lot bigger than your normal brick. Yes Tiger stadium , (Brigg's stadium) is gone. A lot of good memories are of that old park.

By Gus LL (Gusll) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 07:25 pm:

I think the paving bricks are a waste of tax payers money. Just take a ride down 5th. st in Calumet.If you have anything loose on your vehicle you will find it there. All they need is some horse poop & hitchin posts and it will be like old times again. But I guess they call it progress.

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 08:11 pm:

"...it will be like old times again. But I guess they call it progress."

Be careful what you wish for when it comes to progress, you may just get it!! ;-)

By John Rady (Crazybeacon) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 09:08 pm:

I remember parading down the main street in 1978 (the frat hobo parade?), and seeing specs of copper glistening in the road everywhere. I'm sure that road base was made from mine tailings.

By David Soumis (Davesou) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 10:10 pm:

well, hopefully I get up there to see the pristine brick before the plows pull it up during the winter. If the plows don't get it, the frost will.
I'm no engineer, but I can't imagine the plows flying through there without pulling some of them up or whacking a corner or two.

We used to dig out those copper nuggets found in the streets in Chassell all the time. We had coffee cans full of them.

By Bob Jewell, Farmington Hills (Rjewell) on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 - 10:35 pm:

Dean Schwartz
My grandfather was one of the brick masons that laid those pavers on Michigan Avenue. I believe it was in the early 1930's. It shows you that if it's done right they last a long time.

By mickill mouse (Ram4) on Wednesday, June 17, 2009 - 02:09 am:

Thank You, Shirley Waggoner and I am sorry for not posting this sooner.

By Therese (Therese) on Wednesday, June 17, 2009 - 06:53 am:

Are those clay bricks or concrete pavers? I know the concrete pavers last a long time and don't absorb water, but I bet brick intended for roads is made the same, just different materials. My great-grandfather, Nicholas Schneider, had a brother who made bricks in Detroit in the early 20th. I have one brick stamped with the family name, and still see tham in old paving in SE Michigan. There were a few in Bricktown in Ann Arbor, I recall.

Powered by:  
Join Today!
Each day the Pasty Cam has 2 areas to post messages: 
  • Cam Notes - comments related to today's picture and discussion
  • What'sUP - other topics, conversation and announcements
  • *** Please use the appropriate forum ***
    Here's a list of messages posted in the past 24 hours
    See our guest photo gallery for more great views from the U.P.

    Add a Message

    A user/password combination is now required to post messages to Cam Notes. Registration is free. Click here to register or maintain your I.D.

    Home | Pasty Cam | Contest | Order Now | Bridge Cam | Past-E-Mail | GP Hall of Fame | Making Pasties | Questions