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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Melissa Hortman (DFL)

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MAJOR CONSTRUCTION SEASON WILL INVEST MILLIONS IN AREA ROADS

Monday, April 12, 2010
ST. PAUL, MN – The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) announced last week that 283 construction projects will get underway this summer statewide – making this the biggest road construction season in Minnesota history. Three of those projects in particular will impact North Metro area commuters. “We’re looking at a $99 million investment in some of the most heavily-used roads and interchanges in this area," said state Rep. Jerry Newton (DFL – Coon Rapids), who serves on the House Transportation Committee. “It might cause some headaches in the short-term, but area commuters and businesses will benefit greatly from this important work. Add that progress to more transit options provided by the Northstar Corridor, and you begin to see that the North Metro commute just keeps getting better and better.” Following the recent improvements to Hwy 10 between Creek Meadow Blvd. and Hanson Blvd. last year, four more North Metro road construction projects were announced this week, including: • Construct interchanges and bridges at Hwy 169, CR 81 and 85th Ave. in Brooklyn Park Construction dates: July 14, 2008 – July 17, 2011 Cost: $49 million Impacts: Traffic shifts, full closures • Build new highway and bridges at Hwy 610 – CR 81 to Hwy 169 in Brooklyn Park Construction dates: September 18, 2009 – July 15, 2011 Cost: $47.8 million Impacts: Local road closures, detours • Repair concrete on highway and ramp at Hwy 252 in Brooklyn Center Construction dates: August 2 – October 1, 2010 Cost: $1.16 million Impacts: Lane and shoulder closures, temporary full closure • Repair shoulder at Hwy 252 – I-694 to Hwy 10 in Brooklyn Center and Brooklyn Park Construction dates: August 2 – October 1, 2010 Cost: $1.51 million Impacts: Shoulder and lane closures Many of these projects were made possible because of major transportation funding legislation passed in 2008 by the state legislature. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) passed by Congress earlier this year also provides needed matching dollars to make these projects possible. “Year after year now we are seeing the tangible results of the 2008 transportation bill,” said state Rep. Melissa Hortman (DFL – Brooklyn Park). “That progress couldn’t be more welcome. Our aging, congested roads are in need of serious repairs – and these projects are addressing some of the region’s most urgent transportation needs.” “These projects wouldn’t have been possible without the coordinated, committed efforts of area lawmakers, citizens, and local elected officials,” said state Rep. Denise Dittrich (DFL – Champlin). “Working together, we are doing the work necessary to enhance road safety, reduce congestion, and provide our local economies with modern roads to move goods, services, and people more efficiently.” More information about local construction projects, and other construction plans statewide can be found online at: http://www.dot.state.mn.us/construction/. For specific questions about construction timelines and potential traffic impacts caused by these North Metro construction projects, contact MnDOT’s Kent Barnard at (651) 234-7504.