1905: The first automobile transcontinental time record was set by David B. Huss (Detroit) in a Michigan-built Oldsmobile. (Note: The demonstration trip from New York City to Portland, Oregon took 44 days.)
1909: Nation's first mile of concrete highway built by the Wayne County Road Commission (Woodward Avenue between 6 Mile and 7 Mile roads in Detroit).
1911: Nation's first painted centerline by the Wayne County Road Commission (River Road near Trenton). (Note: The first state trunkline in the nation to have a centerline was the Marquette to Negaunee Road (now US-41/M 28) in 1917.)
1912: Nation's first highway materials testing lab was at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
1918: Nation's first four-way red/yellow/green electric traffic light at the corner of Woodward and Michigan avenues in Detroit. (Note: The light was the invention of Detroit Police Officer William Potts.)
1919: Nation's first roadside park on US-2 in Iron County.
Nation's first road marking system was created by William Bachman of the Detroit AAA. (Note: It utilized colored bands and numbers on telephone poles alongside the roadways. By 1920, he had banded 2,000 miles of Michigan's roadside utility poles.)
1922: Nation's first practical highway snowplow was built in Munising.
1925: Nation's first state highway department to use aerial surveys for highways designs.
Nation's first state highway department to correlate soil characteristics with highway design and construction.
1927: Nation's first highway department to use yellow centerlines to designate no passing zones.
1929: Nation's first criss cross and paved runways (Ford Airport, Dearborn).
Nation's first roadside picnic tables (along US-16 (Grand River Avenue) in Ionia).
1935: Nation's first state operated information center (now called welcome centers) was opened near New Buffalo.
1942: Nation's first depressed urban expressway (Davison Freeway (M-8) in Highland Park).
1960: Nation's first state to complete a border-to-border interstate (I-94 running 205 miles from Detroit to New Buffalo).
1977: Nation's first bicycle path to be constructed alongside an interstate freeway (the 37-mile-long I-275 path).
(Updated: July 7, 2015)