Whitmer is asking for federal funds to repair I-375, citing a racist legacy

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Detroit I-375 in 2007. - GAB482, FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS

  • gab482, Flickr Creative Commons
  • Detroit I-375 in 2007.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is notoriously campaigning “to fix those damn roads,” and now he is urging the federal government to help correct the misconduct of one of Detroit’s infamous highways.

Whitmer sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg on Wednesday asking for funds from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to modernize the I-375 and I-75 / I-375 switches in Detroit.

In the letter, Whitmer points out that I-375 was built in the late 1950s and early 1960s through Hastings Street, a key business district that formed the bridge between the communities of the Black Black and Paradise Valley areas.

“As we build our roads and bridges, we also need to take a closer look at the unjust legacy of many of our highways, including the I-375 and I-75 / I-375 Interchange, which were built decades ago to demolish black neighborhoods, dismantle key economic areas and break down families, communities and small businesses. reducing connections, “Whitmer said in a statement.

“Following the passage of the historic two-party infrastructure law, we will be able to build local roads and bridges in the right direction across Michigan, bringing communities together and closing economic gaps, creating thousands of high-paying jobs for Michiganders and ensuring small businesses, downtowns and neighborhoods have high-quality and reliable infrastructure a new era of prosperity for our state, “Whitmer wrote.

Buttigieg previously demanded $ 1 billion to correct racial inequality in the country’s highway infrastructure. The racist legacy of the interstate highway system has been under scrutiny in recent years. Earlier this year, New York Times published a rich photograph on the subject looking at how highway projects destroyed black communities across the nation.

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