Nov. 4 – For the first time in 20 years, nearly all rest areas on Michigan highways will stay open during the winter, Gov. John Engler announced last week.

The Michigan Department of Transportation usually closes the rest areas to save money during colder months. But with road construction going on statewide, keeping the areas open will minimize inconveniences for motorists, Engler said.
Since 1978, MDOT has closed eight to 21 of the state’s 83 rest areas during the winter months. Starting Dec. 1, this year it will close just five rest areas, located on Interstate 75 in Sault Ste. Marie, St. Ignace, Topinabee and Hebron, and on U.S. Highway 31 in Hart.