Five Welcome Center restroom facilities to close due to maintenance staff layoffs

Contact: James Lake, MDOT Office of Communications, 906-250-0993
Agency: Transportation

Fast facts:

  • Five Michigan Welcome Center facility restrooms - Sault Ste. Marie, Monroe, Coldwater, New Buffalo, and Detroit - will be closed the next two weeks as the result of MDOT maintenance employee layoffs.
  • Restrooms will remain open at seven Welcome Centers: Marquette, Ironwood, St. Ignace, Mackinaw City, Dundee, Clare, and Port Huron.
  • Restrooms at the Menominee and Iron Mountain facilities have been and will remain closed until further notice.

April 24, 2020 -- Restrooms at five additional Michigan Welcome Centers will be closed from Saturday, April 25, through Sunday, May 10, as the result of the layoff of Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) employees who clean and sanitize those facilities.

The restrooms at MDOT's Sault Ste. Marie, Monroe, Coldwater, New Buffalo, and Detroit Welcome Centers will be closed for the two-week period. 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 Welcome Center, which has a shared parking lot. The restrooms at these Welcome Centers are currently expected to reopen on Monday, May 11.

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.

Two other Welcome Center facility restrooms had already been closed: Menominee, due to no separation between the restrooms and the information lobby, and Iron Mountain because it shares space in a closed facility.

Most of the state's other 63 rest areas remain open at this time, 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 are closed seasonally, remain closed at this time.

In accordance with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services' recommendations designed to help prevent the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), MDOT closed the information lobbies of all Michigan Welcome Centers as of March 13 until further notice.

The state is taking proactive steps to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan. We appreciate your understanding and cooperation in reducing the coronavirus risk to Michigan residents. 

For current and up-to-date information regarding the coronavirus, visit http://www.Michigan.gov/Coronavirus or http://www.CDC.gov/Coronavirus.