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Wayne County Airport Authority launches Dingell Drive Tunnels and Roadway Rehabilitation program

Plan ahead and allow for extra time when driving to DTW

News Releases
Jan 03 2024

DETROIT (January 3, 2024) Customers heading to Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW) will need to allow extra drive time due to construction. This month, the Wayne County Airport Authority (WCAA) will start the first of a multi-project construction program to rehabilitate roadway tunnels on Dingell Drive. The projects will impact traffic flow on Dingell Drive from approximately the Evans Terminal to the Eureka Road exit and entrance ramps near the McNamara Terminal.

Construction will continue year-round until the anticipated conclusion in 2027. During this time, customers may experience delays while driving on the DTW campus. Departing travelers are encouraged to plan ahead and give themselves additional time to reach their gate. Access to parking decks, lots and the Westin hotel will not be impacted. 

“We appreciate our customers’ patience as we work to improve the safety of our infrastructure critical to operations at DTW,” said Wayne County Airport Authority CEO Chad Newton. “We are committed to limiting the impact on our customers by working year-round to complete construction as quickly as possible.”

Beginning January 8, northbound and southbound traffic on Dingell Drive will be reduced to two lanes in each direction through February 29, 2024, weather permitting. Afterward, from March 2024 to mid-2025, northbound traffic on Dingell Drive will be reduced to one lane. All traffic will be shifted to the southbound side of the roadway and tunnels.

The first project of the Dingell Drive Tunnels and Roadway Rehabilitation Program includes various improvements to the roadway surface, lighting, ventilation, fire protection, communications and monitoring systems, electrical systems and overhead signage, as well as structural repairs and stormwater collection improvements in the tunnels, in addition to other airport infrastructure. The second project is in the planning stages and will address the rehabilitation of exterior drainage and waterproofing systems of the south and north tunnels. WCAA plans for the second project to start in 2025. 

WCAA awarded the $85.5 million contract for the first project of the program to Toebe Construction in September 2023. The $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), which Congress passed in 2021, will fund most of the project.

Initially constructed in the late 1990s and early 2000s, the three tunnels support the airfield runway and taxiway pavement above them and allow access to the McNamara Terminal. The southern tunnel supports Runway 9R/27L and Taxiways Juliet and Tango. The middle tunnel supports Taxiway Fox. The northern tunnel supports Runway 9L/27R and Taxiway Victor. 

Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW) welcomed more than 28 million passengers in 2022. As one of the world’s leading air transportation hubs, DTW offers service from 17 scheduled passenger airlines. Michigan’s largest airport offers approximately 800 flights per day to and from more than 125 nonstop destinations on three continents. With two award-winning passenger terminals, six jet runways, and an onsite AAA Four-Diamond Westin Hotel, DTW is among the world’s most efficient, customer friendly and operationally capable airports in North America. Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport earned Airports Council International’s 2020 and 2022 Airport Service Quality Award for Best Airport by Size and Region (25 to 40 million passengers per year in North America). DTW also ranked #1 in Customer Satisfaction among Mega Airports in the J.D. Power 2023 North America Airport Satisfaction Study and scored highest among the following study factors: Security Check, Food/Beverage and Retail Services, and Terminal Facilities. DTW is operated by the Wayne County Airport Authority, which also operates nearby Willow Run Airport – an important corporate, cargo and general aviation facility. The Airport Authority is entirely self-sustaining and does not receive tax dollars to support airport operations. Visit for more information.

MEDIA LINE: (734) 247-7379