Gates and Bars
All class VI highways are deemed “subject to gates and bars,” which means an abutting landowner may install a gate or bar across the road. The gate or bar cannot interfere with the public’s use of the highway, meaning the traveling public must be able to open and close the gate or remove the bar.
Municipalities have some limited rights. First, the municipality may “regulate” the gate to assure it can be opened and closed by the public. Second, the municipality can remove any gates or bars which fall into disrepair or otherwise interfere with public’s use of the road.
Municipalities also may vote to remove a gate that is not in disrepair, although that right may apply only to Class VI roads created by the municipality in the first place via the layout process. Removing gates and bars requires a finding the action is in the public good, and damages must be paid to affected landowners.