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  • Marki Wilber

No more Olivet Dust Bowl

Olivet can let out a sigh of relief today because the great dust bowl that was created by the construction on Marshall Road is expected to be completed sooner than expected.

On July 16, the Eaton County Road Commission began the milling process on Marshall Road between Nye Hwy and the Olivet city limits in Walton Township.

“Marshall Road is a part of my daily commute to Olivet College,” said Ellaina Hall, junior and commuter at Olivet College. “I tried to avoid it (Marshall Road) prior to the construction because the road was in such bad shape,” Hall said.

It was recently announced on the Eaton County Road Commission’s website that the torn up, clattery mess of Marshall Road should be smooth sailing by Sept. 30. It might come as a surprise that this complete rehabilitation on the 7.5-mile stretch of road is only going to take a little more than two months to complete.

Construction workers are currently working to remove the asphalt surface, repair the joints in the underlying concrete, reconstruct side road and bridge approaches, and then complete the project with a resurfacing of the entire roadway and shoulders.

Kylie Garnsay, a freshmen commuter at Olivet College, is ready for the construction to be over so her car isn’t always covered in an inch of dust. “Marshall Road is the quickest way for me to get to school, so it’ll be nice when I don’t have to ask permission from construction workers to be able to drive down the road every day,” Garnsay said.

The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) awarded this project $1,785,782.90, which was considered a low bid. Some residents from the Olivet-area might consider this a good investment when thinking back on the condition Marshall Road was in for years.

The Many Names of Marshall Road

So what is Marshall Road actually called? Some people call it Old 27 while others may call it Marshall Road or Cochran Road. This can be a bit confusing because Cochran Road technically turns into Marshall Road around a slight curve near 5 Point Highway, although there is no actual ending to Cochran Road. Therefore, Marshall Road, Cochran Road or whatever students want to call it, will remain a road with three names for quite some time.

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