In 2003, a Scoping Document was completed for the Highway 371 area in Crow Wing and Cass Counties to identify the need for future improvements to the approximately 16 mile segment.
In 2003, a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) was issued that addressed the safety and capacity concerns, as well as the potential for social, economic, and environmental impacts to the area. In the DEIS five specific alignment alternatives within the corridor were considered and studied.
The alternatives included:
- Alternative 1 - No Build Alternative
- Alternative 2 - Existing Alignment
- Alternative 3 - Existing Alignment with Pequot Lakes Bypass
- Alternative 4 - Existing Alignment with Pequot Lakes and Jenkins Bypass
- Alternative 5 - Existing alignment with Jenkins Bypass
In June 2004, Alternative 2 was presented at a public meeting as the preferred alternative.
Since then it became increasingly difficult for MnDOT and the city of Pequot Lakes to agree on the details of Alternative 2, as Highway 371 passed through the city. Most of the discussion related to:
- Safety concerns expressed by the city of Pequot Lakes related to the projected traffic volumes for the through-town alignment
- Implementation of required access management controls in Pequot Lakes
See Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement (SFEIS) for more information.
Once the selection of the preferred alternative was determined, MnDOT began working on the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS), which focused solely on Alternative 2.
In January 2005, the FEIS was issued. The document covered the potential impacts that would occur with the proposed Alternative 2 improvements and any mitigation commitments. This included the need for improved safety, congestion reduction, and access along the corridor.
In June 2006, the Pequot Lakes City Council passed a resolution requesting MnDOT to reroute Highway 371 to a corridor east of town.
In January 2007, a joint committee comprised of members of the City Council and the Pequot Lakes Planning and Zoning Commission have met to evaluate and refine the details of a bypass alignment. In September 2007, this group published its findings and recommendations in a Highway 371 Alternate Route Study Group Report.
On December 18, 2008, the Pequot Lakes City Council passed a resolution identifying the alternate alignment (later identified as Alternative 3 MOD) as the preferred alternative for the expansion of Hwy 371 in the City of Pequot Lakes.
In February 2010, MnDOT completed a Draft Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement (Draft SFEIS) for the analysis of impacts and mitigation in the areas affected by the design change to a bypass of Pequot Lakes.
On March 8, 2010 the Draft SFEIS was distributed for public review and comment. The comment period ended on April 16, 2010. Two public hearings/open houses were scheduledl.
In July 2010, MnDOT completed the Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement (SFEIS). The document covered the potential impacts that would occur with the proposed Alternative 3 MOD improvements and any mitigation commitments.
The Record of Decision and Adequacy Determination was issued in mid-to-late October 2010.
In 2012-2014, a project was constructed in partnership with Crow Wing county and the city of Nisswa. The existing signal and intersection at Main Street was moved south one block to align with the new Crow Wing County Hwy 18. Nisswa city frontage roads, utilities and the existing Hwy 371 four lane was also reconstructed and improved.
In October 2014, plans to expand Highway 371 between Nisswa and Jenkins was accelerated, when the project received $45 million in Corridors of Commerce funds.
On Nov. 30, 2015, Mathiowetz Construction was awarded the design-build contract to expand Highway 371 between Crow Wing County Road 18 in Nisswa and north of County Road 16 in Jenkins, includes a new realignment and County Road 11 interchange in Pequot Lakes, for $49.858,419. Learn more about this construction project at www.mndot.gov/d3/hwy371/
MnDOT will continue to work closely with the cities of Jenkins and Pine River to further refine the study layout concepts within their own communities. This will be an ongoing process until the final highway design is programmed to be constructed. Currently, this two lane segment of Highway 371 remains in 'Study' status until funding becomes available.
|December 2002||Public Scoping Meeting|
|February 2003||Final Scoping Decision Document|
|November 2003||Amended Scoping Decision Document|
|December 2003||Start of Draft Environmental Impact Statement|
|January 2004||Public Hearing on Draft Environmental Impact Statement|
|March 2004||Selection of Preferred Alternative by MnDOT|
|January 2005||Distribution of Final Environmental Impact Statement|
|March 2005||Federal Highway Administration Record of Decision|
|March 2005||MnDOT Adequacy Determination|
|June 2006||City of Pequot Lakes requests realignment alternative|
|September 2007||Pequot Lakes joint committee publishes Highway 371 Alternate Route Study Group Report|
|December 2008||Pequot Lakes City Council Passes Resolution Identifying the Bypass as the Preferred Alternative|
|February 2010||MnDOT Draft Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement (SFEIS) for Pequot Lakes bypass|
|Mar. 8 - April 16, 2010||Draft SFEIS available for public review and comments|
|Mar. 29 - 30, 2010||Draft SFEIS Public Hearings in Pequot Lakes and Pine River|
|May - July 2010||Complete Final SFEIS|
|October 2010||Federal Highway Administration Record of Decision|
|Nov - Dec 2010||Municipal Consent (Nisswa, Pequot Lakes and Jenkins)|
|2012 - 2014||Realignment construction of Main Street/Crow Wing County Road 18 in Nisswa|
|2014||Project receives $45 million in Corridors of Commerce funds|
|Nov. 30, 2015||Mathiowetz Construction awarded the design-build contract to expand Highway 371 between Nisswa and Jenkins|
|2016-2017||Expand Hwy 371 to four lanes in Nisswa, Pequot Lakes and Jenkins, includes new alignment hook-ups and County Road 11 interchange in Pequot Lakes, Paul Bunyan trail improvements, new Cullen Brook bridges in Nisswa, and new signalized intersection at County Road 16/Myers Road in Jenkins|
|April 15, 2016||Construction ground breaking ceremony and open house held in Pequot Lakes|
|Unprogrammed||Expand to four lanes between Jenkins and Pine River|
Future dates subject to change.
Web pg: jseelen