Staff layoffs prompt Michigan to temporarily close restrooms at five welcome centers

Welcome to Michigan
Welcome to Michigan

LANSING, Mich. – Restrooms at five Michigan welcome centers closed April 25 after the state’s department of transportation laid off the workers responsible for cleaning and sanitizing the facilities. The restrooms are scheduled to reopen May 11.

The temporarily shuttered facilities include:

  • Sault Ste. Marie;
  • Monroe;
  • Coldwater;
  • New Buffalo; and
  • Detroit.

During the facility closures, the ramps and parking lots will be closed as well due to security and sanitary concerns, with the exception of the Detroit location, which has a shared parking lot.

MDOT previously closed restrooms at two additional welcome centers – Menominee, due to no separation between the restrooms and the information lobby, and Iron Mountain, because it shares space in a closed facility.

Restrooms at the Marquette, Ironwood, St. Ignace, Mackinaw City, Dundee, Clare and Port Huron welcome centers will remain open. Restroom maintenance in those facilities is provided by private contractors.

Most of the state’s other 63 welcome remain open, with the exception of five that are closed seasonally (St. Ignace, Topinabee, Hebron, Ludington, and Hart) and one that is closed due to drainage issues (Chelsea). MDOT’s roadside parks, which operate on a seasonal schedule, are currently closed.

The information lobbies at all Michigan welcome centers have been closed since March 13 in accordance with recommendations from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services designed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.


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