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I-94, other road projects will affect your summer

Road construction projects

Locally, Interstate 94 is the main target for state road work this year.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) recently announced its 2013 construction program for the state. Statewide, $1.1 billion will be spent on transportation and safety improvements on state roads and bridges.

Projects on I-94 that may

affect your travel include:

--Installation of high-tension cable median barriers along a 10-mile segment of I-94 in Alexandria and seven mile segment in Moorhead.

Cost: $2.2 million.

Timeline: May-July 2013.

Impact: Lane and shoulder closures.

Benefit: Safer road.

--Repairing a headwall at the Pelican Creek bridge near Ashby on I-94.

Cost: $100,000.

Timeline: July-August 2013.

Impact: Possible shoulder closures.

Benefit: Improved drainage system.

--Reconstructing the Highway 78 bridge over I-94 near Ashby.

Cost: $1 million.

Timeline: May-September 2013.

Impact: I-94 crossovers with 2-lane, 2-way traffic and Highway 78 detour.

Benefit: Smoother bridge surface.

--Installation of rumble strips on various highways district-wide.

Cost: $550,000.

Timeline: Various.

Impact: Lane closures.

Benefit: Safer roads.

--Resurfacing 7.5 miles of lanes, ramps and shoulders on I-94 between St. Cloud and Clearwater; repair or replacement of culverts, guardrail and cable median barrier.

Cost: $16.4 million.

Timeline: September 2012-July 2013.

Impact: Single-lane traffic April-July; ramp closures; delays and backups during peak travel periods.

Benefit: Smoother ride, improved drainage.

“The $1.1 billion that we are investing in our state transportation system this year will increase regional connections throughout the state, as well as support jobs and community-building that make Minnesota a great place to live and do business,” said Charlie Zelle, MnDOT commissioner.

“The transportation infrastructure is a key component to our state’s economy. This work helps ensure that motorists can continue to get to work, to recreation and that goods and services can get to us,” he added.

The 2013 construction program includes work on 87 projects in the Twin Cities and 193 projects in Greater Minnesota. An additional 57 projects statewide will improve safety at railroad crossings, repair seawalls and docks, make improvements on runways and terminals at regional airports, and improve transit centers.

MnDOT urges motorists to:

--Check for up-to-date information about traffic and road conditions.

--Minimize distractions (e.g., don’t use cell phones or eat or drink while driving)

--Follow posted speed limits; fines double in work zones.

--Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.

Amy Chaffins

Amy Chaffins is a journalist working for the Echo Press newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota.

(320) 763-3133