The University Record, March 29, 1993

Steam tunnel work closes portion of southbound State until June 25

Road salt, the enemy of automobiles, corrodes underground steam tunnels too.

The steam tunnel under State Street, between William and South University, that houses steam piping and other mechanical services feeding into buildings on the west side of State Street, has deteriorated because of road salt and needs to be rebuilt, according to Thomas G. Schlaff, director of construction management in the Plant Extension Office.

The tunnel is not in danger of collapsing but the concrete tunnel and the utilities it houses need to be replaced, Schlaff says.

The tunnel houses voice and data communication cables, twisted pair copper lines and fiberoptic and co-axial broadband cables. All of these need to be removed and rerouted before tunnel demolition can commence.

Work began last week, reducing State Street to one northbound lane. Drivers traveling south on State follow a detour that includes North University, Church Street and South University. Vehicles no longer can turn right on to State from East William Street.

Ann Arbor Transportation Authority bus stops on southbound State, which have been in front of Betsey Barbour and the Michigan Union, have been moved temporarily to Thompson Street. Stops are at Thompson and William, on Thompson Street near the parking structure and at State Street at Monroe.

Schlaff says the project is expected to be completed by June 25, in time for the annual Catherine McAuley Health System circus parade.

Dale Krull Construction Co. of Ann Arbor is the contractor for the $400,000 project.