Hennepin County and MnDOT’s effort to develop a corridor design concept and an Environmental Assessment will need to integrate the strong values and priorities of communities along the corridor while maintaining a regional perspective.
An effective Stakeholder Involvement Plan is critical to ensure that issues and concerns are understood and addressed as part of the process. The development of the Hwy 55 Coalition indicates that there is a very strong base of community interest and investment in the roadway; therefore, citizen and municipality involvement is a priority in our plan. Natural resources, including wetlands, floodplains, and Lake Sarah, are abundant in the project area, making agency involvement (Department of Natural Resources, Army Corps of Engineers, and US Fish and Wildlife Service) another important focus of the plan. It is critical that each of these groups has an opportunity to become informed about the project and to provide feedback and technical advice so that project impacts are minimized and properly mitigated when unavoidable and permitting and approvals go smoothly.
Hennepin County and MnDOT are committed to providing a safe, economical and timely solution to the many issues and will make every effort to consider stakeholders’ concerns in developing the design layout and in analysis of environmental effects of the project.
Goals and objectives
- Minimize conflict by developing a corridor design concept and evaluation process that maintains early and ongoing stakeholder involvement
- Inform stakeholders of project design status, including maintaining communication with the Highway 55 Coalition
- Understand stakeholders’ concerns and emphasize responsiveness to them in evaluating corridor design concept options
- Meet with property owners, communities, citizen groups and agencies to respectfully listen to their concerns and understand their values
- Educate stakeholders about the impacts and benefits for each community
- Build support for a reasonable solution that will address safety concerns, congestion, and delay while remaining cost-effective
Stakeholders and interested parties
Policy makers (includes elected/appointed officials and staff):
- State Legislature
- Metropolitan Council, including Metro Transit
- Hennepin County
- City Governments (Public Works and Planning departments)
- Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
- Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT)
Regulatory agencies (includes boards and staff):
- Elm Creek Watershed Management Commission
- Minnehaha Creek Watershed District
- Pioneer-Sarah Creek Watershed Management Commission
- Bassett Creek Watershed Management Commission
- Three Rivers Park District
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
- Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MnDNR)
- Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MnPCA); Air Quality and Noise
- Minnesota State Historic Preservation Office (MnSHPO)
- Highway 55 Coalition (and technical advisory committee)
- Affected property owners
- Business along corridor
- Citywide residents and businesses
- Users of the transportation system
Stakeholder involvement process
- Identify key issues through outreach activities
- Clarify the issues through follow-up communications
- Analyze design and environmental issues to better understand implications
- Disclose findings of analyses to concerned parties
- Respond to questions and clarify position on issues
- Move forward with responsible design decisions and environmental documentation
Public meetings/open houses
A press release announcing the public hearing was distributed to local newspapers by MnDOT Public Affairs staff. Additionally, newsletters announcing the hearing were mailed to landowners along the Highway 55 corridor using a mailing list provided by Hennepin County. The EA/EAW can be found online in the documents section of this website. In addition, the EA/EAW was available at MnDOT and Hennpin County offices, local city halls, and libraries.
Representatives from MnDOT and Hennepin County were available to answer questions about the proposed project, and the public was able to formally comment. There was no formal presentation. Written comments were accepted at the meeting and by mail through Friday, May 9, 2008. All comments were reviewed and considered by project staff.
- Jan. 30, 2007
A Public Information Open House for the Highway 55 from Plymouth to Rockford project was held Tuesday, January 30, 2007, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Training Room of the Hennepin County Public Works Facility (1600 Prairie Drive, Medina).
A press release announcing the Public Information Meeting was distributed to local newspapers by MnDOT Public Affairs staff. Additionally, newsletters announcing the meeting were mailed to landowners along the Highway 55 corridor using a mailing list provided by Hennepin County.
Approximately 75 people attended the Public Information Open House and representatives from MnDOT and Hennepin County were available to explain the project and answer questions. No formal presentation was given. Attendees viewed informational exhibits and layouts depicting the current design concept. Written comments were accepted at the meeting and by mail. All comments were reviewed and considered by project staff.