Hwy 53 safety improvements and preservation project


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Hwy 53 near Cotton








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arial photo of the town of Cotton and the Hwy 53/Cty. Hwy 52 intersection before construction.This aerial photo shows the Hwy 53/County Hwy 52 intersection in the town of Cotton.

Frequently asked questions about the Cotton J-Turn

Q. There hasn’t been a crash here for more than two years. Why is MnDOT doing this now?
A. Crashes are random occurrences. To account for this, MnDOT studies crash rates over multiple years. The crash history at this location suggests a lull in crashes-not a trend. J-Turns reduce crash risks at intersections.


Q. How long will it take to build the project?
A. The project will be completed by late-August 2012.


Q. What’s happening and when?
A. In May culverts, U-Turn areas and inside median turn-lanes will be constructed. In mid-June outside shoulder turn-lanes will be constructed. In July final paving will be completed.


Q. Will the frontage road close?
A. No. It will remain open.


Q. Will the County Highway 52 intersection close?
A. It will close during the day for two to three days in mid- to late-June. Motorists will use the U-Turns during this period.


Q. Is there room for trucks to turn around in the turning medians?
A. The paved areas in the median will be larger than they are currently. The new U-Turn areas were designed to accommodate WB-67 interstate semi-tractor trailers (67-foot wheel base, 53-foot trailer) which are among the largest vehicles permitted to travel on Minnesota roads. Large trucks will need to use the 16-foot-wide, right shoulders on Highway 53 which are designed as turning bays for making the turns.


Q. How do I learn how to navigate a J-Turn?
A. Signs will be installed and a video showing how to drive through a J-Turn is online.



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