The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Local News

May 21, 2013

Roundabout concerns, affections voiced

Open house provided information about Highway 22 plans

(Continued)

MANKATO — MnDOT, partnering with the city and county, is still sorting out how traffic will be restricted and diverted during construction. Hoffman said it will come down to balancing the desire to reduce disruption with the desire to get the project done ASAP.

"If you want to minimize the impacts, it generally takes more time for

construction," Hoffman said.

Bryant Ficek said completely shutting down streets for a time hasn¹t been ruled out with the exception of Highway 22 ‹ that will remain open, with lane restrictions, throughout construction.

"All options are on the table," Ficek said.

The project will definitely be completed during the 2014 construction

season, according to MnDOT officials. And Hoffman said the discussions will include every option to speed up the process,   including working 24-hours a day, to see if project could be fast-tracked ‹ possibly with a goal of being done by early August when traffic spikes.

"Aug. 1 is really important here for back-to-school and Vikings training

camp," he said.

Along with finalizing construction designs and planning the traffic

management, a comprehensive communication strategy is being developed to keep business owners, shoppers, workers and other travelers informed about developments. And another informational meeting is planned for later in the summer after more details have been worked out.

Preliminary cost estimates have each roundabout costing $2.6 million.

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