We completed the Hwy 77 Managed Lanes study in August 2010. Two preferred options were approved by Dakota County and the cities of Bloomington, Apple Valley and Eagan. The preferred options include the MnPASS option and the contra flow MnPASS option. These two options along with a third hybrid option are being evaluated as part of the Hwy 77 Managed Lane and Cedar Grove Transit Access Engineering Study.
About this study
A study of Hwy 77 (Cedar Avenue) in Bloomington, Apple Valley and Eagan is taking place to find ways to relieve congestion. The highway is congested during the morning commute, crash rates are increasing and traffic volumes are expected to increase by 36 percent over the next 20 years.
The Hwy 77 Managed Lane & Cedar Grove Transit Access Engineering Study is actually two projects, co-led by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) and the Dakota County Regional Railroad Authority (DCRRA). The projects are interrelated.
Hwy 77 Managed Lanes
The purpose of this portion of the work is to identify a preferred alternative for the managed lane improvements to Hwy 77 between 140th Street in Apply Valley and Old Shakopee Road in Bloomington. MnDOT is seeking stakeholder input in identifying the alternative that best meet the goals and needs in the corridor and the region.
Preferred Options under evaluation include:
Adding a MnPASS lane from 138th St. to Old Shakopee Road
Adding a MnPASS contra flow lane from 138th Street to Old Shakopee Road
Adding a hybrid option that includes MnPASS lane and reduces the length of a contra flow lane
To improve safety, ease congestion and maintain consistent speeds, the Minnesota Department of Transportation is introducing the “managed road” to Minnesota drivers. A managed road uses technology – including ramp meters, freeway cameras and electronic signage – to provide drivers with more real-time information. That helps drivers make more informed decisions, increases safety and creates more reliable commute times.
Keeping traffic moving at consistent speeds is known in transportation circles as “speed harmonization.” It actively manages traffic by posting advisory speed messages to warn drivers of slower traffic ahead and to smooth flow and reduce shock waves. An incident management system will come online first, with speed harmonization soon after.
In addition, the new MnPASS Express Lanes and express transit provide more transportation choices and helps keep traffic moving at consistent speeds.
Cedar Grove Transit Access Engineering
The purpose of this portion of the work is to develop concepts to improve transit access between Hwy 77 and the Cedar Grove Transit Station for the benefit of the METRO Red Line (Cedar Avenue Transitway). Cedar Grove is one of the stops on the METRO Red line, where bus rapid transit (BRT) service will begin in Summer 2013.
The work for these projects began in January 2013 and is expected to continue through mid-2014.