Progress is being made on a daily basis.  Even as winter has slowed most road construction projects around the state and in our area, work crews with the Minnesota Department of Transportation have used the "off"-season to continue the work inside the Twin Ports Interchange Project, located along I-35 in Duluth.

Work on the multi year project began this past year, with lots of demolition work and the construction of temporary roadways and ramps for the detour that will be in place for the remainder of the project.  That work continued this winter as crews continued to report to the road construction site.

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Recently, officials with the Minnesota Department of Transportation had reason to celebrate another milestone reached for the work:  The first beams that will be used in construction of the permanent part of the roadway were delivered.  To share the news and the event, the Minnesota Department of Transportation took to Facebook to allow their followers a chance to see them being off-loaded from the delivery trucks.

Watch:

According to Eric Cooper - one of the Assistant Project Managers for the Twin Ports Interchange Major Projects Team, this initial delivery of beams represents only the first of many to come for the project.  Here are some key facts shared in the video:

  • The beams are coming from Eau Claire, Wisconsin - making one-day trips, usually arriving at the site between 9:00 AM and 12:00 Noon.
  • Two trucks travel together at a time to deliver pairs of the beams
  • The beams are quite large in scale - standing 7-feet tall
  • MNDOT uses a crane system to off-load the beams from the trucks - on the northbound lanes of I-35.
  • The beams are being staged on wooden, temporary blocking near the railroad tracks until  they're needed to be put in place
  • Drivers should anticipate some additional temporary lane closures along I-35 in the Twin Ports Interchange area to accommodate the delivery of these beams

The multi-year Twin Ports Interchange project started in 2021 and is expected to wrap in in 2024. Total estimated cost (using current pricing) is around $343 million.  Additional details about the road work is available on the Minnesota Department of Transportation's website.

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