Oct. 10, 2014 project status meeting
About 50 people attended the October 10 project status meeting.
There was a short presentation and then MnDOT engineers answered questions about the project.
Environmental Review Process
- Purpose and Need – EPA and COE Concurrence (Completed)
- Alternative Analysis - EPA and COE Concurrence (Completed)
- Cooperating Agency Review Draft EA – (now in progress)
- EA Publication/Public Comment Period/Public Hearing – Opportunity for public comments on EA content, including social, economic, and environmental impacts and minimization/mitigation measures. EA will identify a preferred alternative.
- MnDOT and FHWA review of comments, and make decision if there is potential for significant impacts.
Project Schedule - Steps For Completion
- Complete Environmental Documentation
- Review Draft Environmental Assessment to FHWA and Cooperating Agencies- October 2014 (Completed)
- EA Public Comment Period/Hearing – Dec/Jan 2014-5
- Alignment Selection – February 2015
- Final Plans – Fall 2016
- ROW Acquisition Complete – December 2016
- Permitting - December 2016
- Construction – Goal is Begin in Winter of 2016/2017
Layout alternatives currently being studied (See layouts above)
- Two middle routes are being considered: One would require a detour, the other would not.
- South route: No extended period of traffic detours are anticipated.
- Alternative 2A ─ a combination of the orange line on the top layoute and the blue line on the bottom layout.
- Alternative 3A ─ a combination of the orange line on the top layout and the red line on the bottom layout.
- Oct. 10, 2014 public meeting project update (PDF)
- July 15, 2014 public meeting project update (PDF)
- May 14, 2014 public meeting project update (PDF)
- Oct. 4, 2013 public meeting project update (PDF)
The Hwy 1/169 corridor in the Ely area has an average annual daily traffic of 2,600 (2011 traffic counts). Several transportation-related deficiencies have been identified on this corridor, including horizontal and vertical curves, narrow shoulders and steep roadside drops. Trees and vegetation are encroaching on sight lines, there are few turn lanes and few opportunities to safely pass. These deficiencies contribute to higher than average crash rates in the district. This project is being developed to address these deficiencies, and includes a 5.7 mile reconstruction and the addition of turn lanes and select passing zones.
Eighteen alternatives have been analyzed within the Eagles Nest Corridor. MnDOT worked closely with the Hwy 169 Task Force in the selection and evaluation of these alternatives. The following criteria was evaluated for each alternative:
- Roadway shading problems/maintenance costs
- Roadway geometrics/passing opportunities
- Property impacts (right of way needs)
- Environmental impacts (noise, wetlands, sulfide rock)
- Construction staging
Minimum design criteria
- Design speed - 55 mph
- Travel lanes - 12-feet-wide
- Shoulders - Eight-feet-wide (six-feet paved and two-feet gravel)
- Reduce the length of shaded areas of roadway
- Minimize environmental impacts