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E-M:/ Port Huron Bridge Approach

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[Federal Register: January 27, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 17)] [Notices] [Page 3974] >From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov] [DOCID:fr27ja05-91]


Federal Highway Administration

Environmental Impact Statement: St. Clair County, MI

AGENCY: Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), DOT.
ACTION: Notice of intent.


SUMMARY: The FHWA is issuing this notice to advise the public that an
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be prepared for proposed
improvements to the United States Port of Entry plaza for the Blue
Water Bridge in St. Clair County, Michigan.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. James Kirschensteiner, Assistant
Division Administrator, Federal Highway Administration, 315 W. Allegan
Street, Room 201, Lansing, Michigan 48933, telephone: (517) 702-1835.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The FHWA in cooperation with the Michigan
Department of Transportation (MDOT) is preparing an Environmental
Impact Statement (EIS) to evaluate alternatives for potential
improvements to the United States Border Plaza at the Blue Water
Bridge. Invitations are being sent to other Federal agencies to become
cooperating agencies in the development of the environmental impact
statement for he subject project.
    The Blue Water Bridge is a major passenger and commercial border
crossing between the United States and Canada and is the termination
point for I-94/I-69 in the United States and for Highway 402 in Canada.
MDOT owns and operates the Blue Water Bridge in conjunction with the
Canadian Blue Water Bridge Authority (BWBA). MDOT also owns and
operates the Blue Water Bridge Border Plaza. Several agencies of the
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) operate on the United States
Plaza. These agencies are responsible for inspecting vehicles, goods,
and people entering the United States and include: the Bureau of
Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the United States Department of
Agriculture (USDA), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The
inspection agencies lease facilities on the United States Plaza from
MDOT through the General Services Administration (GSA), which serves as
the Federal-leasing agent. MDOT collects tolls from vehicles departing
the United States for Canada on the plaza.
    The study area is located within the City of Port Huron and Port
Huron Township. The study area consists of approximately 30 blocks (195
acres) of urban land use surrounding the existing plaza and ramps, and
its extends to the west along I-94/I-69 for approximately 2.2 miles.
The study areas includes the existing plaza, the Black River Bridge,
the Water Street interchange, and locations for off-site inspection
facilities, located north of I-94/I-69 and west of the Water Street
    In September 2002, this project started as an Environmental
Assessment (EA) and has proceeded through the scoping phase, Purpose
and Need documentation, and alternatives development. Two resource
agency meetings and three public information meetings were held during
this time. As a result of identified potentially significant impacts,
FHWA and MDOT have concluded that an Environmental Impact Statement
should be completed.
    A range of plaza and transportation improvement alternatives will
be analyzed within the recommended study area. Reasonable alternatives
under consideration include: (1) Taking no-action, (2) expanding the
existing plaza location in the City of Port Huron, and (3) Relocating
the major plaza functions to off-site plaza location in Port Huron
    Agencies and citizen involvement will continue to be solicited
throughout this process. A public meeting and a public hearing will be
held on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). Public notice
will be given of the time and place of the hearing. The DEIS will be
available for public and agency review and comment prior to the public
    To ensure that the full range of issues related to this proposed
action are addressed and all significant issues identified, comments
and suggestions are invited from all interested parties. Comments of
questions concerning this proposed action and the EIS should be
directed to the FHWA at the address provided above.

(Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Number 20.205,
Highway Research, Planning and Construction. The regulations
implementing Executive Order 12372 regarding intergovernmental
consultation on Federal programs and activities apply to this program.)

    Issued on: January 12, 2005.
James J. Steele,
Division Administrator, Lansing, Michigan.
[FR Doc. 05-1556 Filed 1-26-05; 8:45 am]

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