The joke goes there are only two seasons in Minnesota - winter and road construction.
At least one half of that cliche should prove true in 2007 in the Brainerd area, with a number of city, county and state road projects planned. We'll have to wait and see about winter.
The road project that will affect the most motorists will be the Highway 210 reconstruction from the Mississippi River bridge in Brainerd to Ironton.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation-managed project will start April 23 and will be constructed in four phases:
The Mississippi River bridge to Fifth Avenue in Brainerd, replacing curb and gutter, sidewalk, concrete median and pavement.
The block east of Fourth Avenue Northeast in Brainerd will mark the end of the first segment of the Highway 210 reconstruction project from Brainerd to Ironton. The project, to be constructed in four segments, is scheduled to start April 23. The Highway 210 project is one of several state, county and city projects scheduled in 2007 in the Brainerd area. Brainerd Dispatch/Nels Norquist» Purchase reprints of this photo.
Fifth Avenue Northeast to the end of the four-lane in east Brainerd, replacing pavement.
End of the four-lane to Ironton, replacing pavement and constructing a left-hand turn lane at the airport.
Highway 25 from Highway 210 to the railroad bridge, replacing pavement.
There will be a three- to four-week detour with the project starting in mid-April, as the city of Brainerd replaces storm sewer beneath Highway 210 at Franklin Arts Center. The westbound detour will follow First Avenue Northeast from Washington to Evergreen, Evergreen/Fir from First Avenue Northeast to North Eighth Street, North Eighth Street from Fir back to Washington Street. The eastbound detour will follow South Eighth Street from Washington to Oak Street, Oak Street from South Eighth Street to Southeast 13th Street, Southeast 13th Street back to Washington Street.
Other Brainerd area MnDOT projects planned in 2007 include the Highway 10 relocation and expansion to four lanes in Staples; mill and bituminous overlay of Highway 25 from Fourth Avenue in Pierz to just south of Highway 18 in Brainerd; re-deck of the Mississippi River bridge, Morrison County Road 52 and railroad overpasses on Highway 10 in Little Falls; and a mill and bituminous overlay of Highway 71 from the Red Eye River bridge in Sebeka to the Blueberry River bridge in Menahga.
Brainerd Dispatch/Monica Nieman
Cathy Clark, MnDOT public affairs coordinator, noted all projects are subject to change.
Brainerd road projects
In addition to work on the Highway 210 project, the city of Brainerd is working on a joint project with Crow Wing County to reconstruct Mill Avenue/Crow Wing County Road 3 from Washington Street to the Mississippi River bridge. Jeff Hulsether, city engineer, said the reconstruction could include adding a third lane for turning traffic.
"We are looking at different options for the design to meet present and future traffic volumes," Hulsether said. No start date for the project has been established. Residents opposed to the project have presented the city and the county with a petition to stop the project.
Other Brainerd street projects include reconstruction with water, sanitary sewer and storm sewer on Bluff Avenue from North Seventh to North 10th streets; Terrace Avenue from North 10th to Evergreen streets; North Eighth and North Ninth streets from Fir Street to Bluff Avenue; and North 10th Street from Grove Street to Bluff Avenue.
Wright Street is proposed to be extended a half mile east of Southeast 13th Street to the Bruce Isebrand property, which the city is purchasing on a contract for deed. The extension is pending approval from Oak Lawn Township.
Baxter road projects
Work on Cypress Drive through the former Pine Meadows Golf Course will continue. Other 2007 road and utility projects are pending review by the city's utilities commission.
Crow Wing County road projects
The third phase of the rehabilitation and resurfacing of Crow Wing County Road 2 in the southern part of the county, from Highway 371 to Koering Road, is planned. The five-phase project is expected to be completed in 2009.
On the east side of Bay Lake, Crow Wing County Road 10 will be completely reconstructed from Highway 18 to Crow Wing County Road 14. Depending on meeting deadlines for federal funding, Crow Wing County Highway Engineer Duane Blanck said the project could be pushed back to 2008.
"But it is anticipated we will get it done this year," Blanck said.
Other possible 2007 road projects in Crow Wing County include replacing the Crow Wing County Road 1 bridge over Thompson Creek in the northwest part of the county with box culverts; reconstructing the intersection of Crow Wing County roads 21 and 131 in St. Mathias Township; improving Crow Wing County Road 77/Pine Beach Road near Highway 371; constructing the last phase of Riverside Drive to Wise Road; resurfacing Crow Wing County Road 159 from Highway 18 to Crow Wing County Road 8; resurfacing Sorensen Lake Road; working with East Gull Lake to resurface Gull River Road; working with Crosslake, Breezy Point, Ideal Township and Mission Township on Fawn Lake Road between Crow Wing County Roads 39 and 3; reconstructing bridges in Little Pine, Timothy and Daggett Brook townships; working with Fifty Lakes on a grant to reconstruct Kego Lake Road; improving county road intersections in connection with MnDOT's Highway 210 project; and working on trail projects throughout the county.
Blanck said if the Crow Wing County Road 10 or Riverside Drive projects are delayed, the county will look at resurfacing Wise Road/Crow Wing County Road 49. If not, that project likely would happen in 2008.
MATT ERICKSON can be reached at email@example.com or 855-5857.
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