Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

Nov. 25, 2013

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MnDOT invites public comment on first State Ports and Waterways plan


ST. PAUL, Minn. - The public is invited to comment on the Statewide Ports and Waterways Plan, the Minnesota Department of Transportation said today. The first-ever plan for ports and waterways in Minnesota promotes a safe, efficient and cost-effective system for freight shippers in an era of constrained resources. Public comments will be accepted through Dec. 27.


Four ports on Lake Superior and five ports on 222 miles of the Mississippi River now provide essential transportation connections and access to national and international markets. The plan identifies opportunities, challenges and strategies to improve freight movement along this system and establish consistent federal and state funding sources.


“MnDOT supports a commerce-friendly freight network in Minnesota for the benefit of regional and international trade,” said Commissioner Charlie Zelle. “We must improve and use Minnesota’s aging ports, channels and locks and dams along the Mississippi River and Great Lakes to their fullest industrial extent if we are to help businesses move products, compete for jobs and talent and contribute to economic growth.”


In June, MnDOT presented the plan in Duluth, Winona and St. Paul through a series of open house meetings.
The plan recommends improvements to system infrastructure, capacity, technology and logistics and a mix of public and private investment.  Stronger partnerships at federal, state and local levels are also identified as key to the port and waterway system’s success.


For more information about the Ports and Waterways Plan or to make comments, contact Matthew Pahs, MnDOT freight planner, at 651-366-3694 or Matthew.Pahs@state.mn.us. Updated information will be posted at www.dot.state.mn.us/ofrw/pwp.html


To request the document in an alternative format, call 651-366-4718 or email your request to ADArequest.dot@state.mn.us.

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