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General News

Vlahakis’ Seaway Painting Resumes Work on Mackinac Bridge

MACKINAC COUNTY, MI – Seaway Painting of Livonia, founded by George Vlahakis, resumed work on the Mackinac Bridge on May 11, Up North Live reported, adding that the company had completed the repainting of the north tower in 2017-18.

Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA) Executive Secretary Kim Nowack told Up North Live that “this painting work is weather dependent, and the weather has now improved to where the project can resume. As has been the case the last three seasons, this work will require lane closures on the bridge near the tower, including some intermittent closures while Seaway stages equipment, so we ask that customers use extra caution when crossing.”

According to Up North Live, “the south tower project began in 2019 and is scheduled to be completed by fall 2020.”

The MBA said “closures of the northbound lanes will be lifted on Fridays and on southbound lanes on Sundays during peak traffic weekends,” Up North Live reported, adding that “the south tower contract is for just less than $6.5 million and Seaway is required to complete the project by December 31, 2020.”

The contract for the north tower was “just less than $6.3 million,” Up North Live reported, noting that “until the 1970s, the bridge authority hired contractors to spot paint the bridge towers as needed,” and “since the late '70s, MBA employees have handled that task.”

Seaway Painting of Livonia was honored with the E. Crone Knoy Award from the Society for Protective Coatings, “an industry group that focuses on protecting and preserving concrete, steel, and other industrial and marine structures,” Up North Live reported in February of this year.

The E. Crone Knoy Award “recognizes an outstanding achievement in industrial or commercial coatings work that demonstrates innovation, excellence in craftsmanship, or the use of state-of-the-art techniques or products to creatively solve problems or provide long-term service,” Up North Live reported.

George Vlahakis started Seaway in 1964 with a business philosophy based on hard work, as noted on the company’s website. Vlahakis expanded his business throughout the years from Detroit to Livonia, where the headquarters are now located. For more than five decades, the family-owned and operated business has established a reputation for quality work and safety on its worksites. Steve Vlahakis and his sister Irene Zannis now run Seaway Painting having grown up in the business that was started by their father.

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