“These projects are critical investments in Minnesota’s aging transportation system,” Zelle said. “We will repave roads, repair and paint bridges, replace culverts and rehabilitate structures such as the Stillwater Lift Bridge.”
Zelle also announced 49 multimodal projects valued at $32 million. These include airport, port and railroad projects that are outside of the state road construction program.
Transportation funding deficit persists
Despite the large construction program this year, Zelle said the long-term transportation funding picture remains bleak compared to the system’s needs. In 2017, Governor Dayton and the Legislature provided an additional $640 million in trunk highway bonding over the next four years as well as $164 million in cash. This additional funding will reduce Minnesota’s annual $600 million transportation funding gap by $200 million for each of the next four years. However, Minnesota’s $600 million annual funding gap will resume beginning again in 2022.
2018 road and bridge construction
This year’s construction program features a number of projects in the Twin Cities metro area, including:
- Interstate 35W@94 – Upgrade infrastructure, improve transit service on I-35W and Lake Street, and provide better access into the Lake Street Business District.
- Highway 169 Belle Plaine – Repair or replace concrete pavement, construct a Reduced Conflict Intersection and install cable median barrier between Jordan and Belle Plaine
- Highway 169 Champlin – Replace Elm Creek bridges, realign Highway 169 between the Mississippi River and East Hayden Lake Road, and construct a pedestrian/bicycle underpass beneath Highway 169 at West River Road
- I-35 North Metro split – Resurface six miles of interstate from just south of the I-35 split at Forest Lake to a half mile north of Highway 8 and replace three bridges
Greater Minnesota will also see a lot of construction work this summer, including:
- I-35 Snake River – Construct two new bridges at Snake River and resurface seven miles of I-35
- Highway 38 – Resurface pavement, provide intersection improvements, and replace 41 culverts
- Highway 61 Two Harbors – Replace signals in Two Harbors, add turn lanes, resurface highway, make sidewalk and accessibility improvements, create new entrance at Campground Road
- Highway 194 – Reconfigure lanes to eliminate current weave, rehabilitate bridges, repair concrete pavement and storm sewers, and make accessibility improvements
- Highway 72- International Bridge – Work with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation to conduct a preliminary design and environmental study for the replacement of the Baudette/Rainy River International Bridge
- Highway 2 – Replace bridge Kennedy Bridge deck
- Highway 10 Elk River bridge – Reconstruct the bridge over Lake Orono and resurface road west of Joplin
- Highway 10 Big Lake to Clear Lake – Reconstruct 14 miles of eastbound road surface, including shoulders, and add Reduced Conflict Intersection at County Road 23 in Becker
- Highways 28, 29, 104 in Glenwood – Resurface highways, reconstruct downtown using a Complete Streets concept, add new signal system, make accessibility improvements and mitigate flood-prone area near Pope County Fairgrounds
- US 71 north in Kandiyohi County – Resurface highway, construct turning and bypass lanes, and construct a pedestrian underpass
- Highway 19/Highway 71 in Redwood Falls – Construct two-way left turn lanes, install new signal system at County Road 101, and make accessibility improvements
- Highway 63 Red Wing Bridge – Replace Highway 63 bridges over the Mississippi River and Highway 61 and realign the approach roads
- Highway 63 – Repave Highway 63 between Rochester and Zumbro Falls and replace four culverts
- I-35 at Faribault – Pave four miles of southbound I-35 at Faribault
- Highway 14/Highway15 New Ulm Gateway – Replace New Ulm river bridge, Front Street Bridge and build interchange at Highway 14/Highway 15/County Road 21
- Highway 22 – Construct roundabout at County Road 90, add left turn lanes and resurface from County Road 15 to County Road 90
- Highway 60 Windom to St. James – Complete four-lane expansion
For a complete list of projects by highway, visit www.mndot.gov/roadwork/current.html. Project page information includes construction schedule, traffic impacts, maps, benefits and costs.
Motorists can stay informed about projects and other transportation topics by connecting to MnDOT via social media, as well as by signing up to receive email updates at www.mndot.gov.
Watch for orange cones
Motorists may encounter lane closures or lane shifts, uneven road surfaces, equipment and other unexpected obstacles when driving near or through work zones. MnDOT advises motorists to:
- Check www.511mn.org for up-to-date information about traffic and road conditions
- Expect delays, especially during peak travel times
- Minimize distractions
- Follow posted speed limits; fines are up to $300 in work zones
- Avoid making lane changes within work zones