It'll be a busy year for work crews with the Minnesota Department of Transportation.  The state agency just announced their slate of road construction projects that are on the schedule for 2021 and it's impressive in both scope and scale.  All told, more than 200 individual projects will be worked on throughout the summer and early fall along with additional improvements on 51 multimodal projects.  Many of these planned work zones include high-visibility work on some of the busiest roadways in the state.

According to information provided by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, all of the work planned will "help maintain [the state's] roads and bridges, improve safety and support thousands of construction jobs across the state".  That commitment to transportation is occurring even in what could be considered a trying year - pandemic and all.  Minnesota Department of Transportation Commissioner Margaret Anderson Kelliher adds:

"Although Minnesota's transportation needs greatly outnumber available resources, this year's construction program demonstrates MNDOT's commitment to making smart investments in our system to better serve all people."

So what's in store for drivers - especially those here in the Northland?  MNDOT has a few high-visibility road projects scheduled for the Duluth-Superior area - including:

  • I-35 work along the stretch from Mesaba Avenue north - improving drainage and upgrading fiber optic camera.
  • I-35 paving - from Thompson Hill in Duluth to Pine City.
  • Highway 53 - resurfacing in the southbound lanes from County Road 8 to County Road 13 (on the way from the Iron Range to Duluth).
  • Highway 61 - resurfacing work form Knife River to Scenic Drive.
  • Twin Ports Interchange (Can of Worms) - 2021 represents the "big" start to this multi-year project to replace and redesign this high-traffic intersection.  Once done, the work will eliminate blind merges, left exits, replace the aging infrastructure, and improve freight mobility (access for large loads coming to and from the Port of Duluth-Superior).

MNDOT has an interactive map available that allows you to zoom in and out of projects; the map details all of the work on the books for this summer.

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A few Northland communities will also see urban reconstruction projects. Look for work being done by MNDOT in Biwabik, Gilbert, Grand Marais, and International Falls.

For complete details about all of these projects and all of the additional work being performed by MNDOT this summer, click here.  You can also follow along on their social media page for updates.

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