The Minnesota Statewide Ports and Waterways Plan is an effort to achieve the goals set forth in the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT)’s Minnesota GO and the objectives of the Statewide Multimodal Transportation Plan. In an era of constrained resources, Minnesotans benefit from the unique capabilities and competitive advantages offered by the state’s ports and waterways – particularly, increased shipping options, cost savings, and access to distant markets.
- Contact: Matthew Pahs
MnDOT is partnering with the Olmsted County Regional Railroad Authority to conduct a congressionally appropriated alternatives analysis of freight rail impacts and potential corridor and mitigation alternatives along the DM&E railroad in Rochester, MN. The study will identify reasonable options that could be advanced for further study and selection of a preferred alternative in an Environmental Impact Statement.
- Contact: Peter Dahlberg
MnDOT in partnership with the University of Minnesota and the American Trucking Research Institute are testing the implementation and deployment of a comprehensive system for identifying trucks and truck parking spaces and to disseminate parking availability information to truck drivers and carrier to improve their operational decision-making along the I-94 corridor west of the Twin Cities.
- Contact: John Tompkins
A study of truck mobility in the Twin Cities metropolitan area using truck GPS data from private industry and existing data from MnDOT. The objectives of this study is to integrate private and public freight data sets to generate freight mobility and reliability measures and to identify significant freight node and corridors in the region. The outcome will allow MnDOT to: better identify system impediments such as traffic congestion and truck bottlenecks; investigate truck volume contributing to traffic congestion and delay; and use the derived measure as a guide for decision support on infrastructure investment, freight forecasting, and planning.
- Contact: John Tompkins
This study is a comprehensive analysis of how freight is planned and programmed in Minnesota. It examines federal and state policy for opportunities to better align the two. The study gathers existing sources of freight-related data and sets forth possible performance measures that could be implemented as part of the approaching Statewide Freight Plan Update.
The plan focuses on both urban and rural freight transportation concerns. Printing and manufacturing of optical equipment, specialized electrical equipment, and machinery are important economic components of the urbanized area, and agriculture is important to the rural economy. Access to and through the Twin Cities is also a key transportation concern.
- Contact: John Tompkins
- Central Minnesota Regional Freight Study Final Report (PDF 5.9 MB)
- Recommendations (PDF 1.2 MB)
Twin Cities Metropolitan Area Regional Freight Initiative (2012)
MnDOT partnered with Metropolitan Council to highlight the importance of the region's freight transportation system to businesses and residents, particularly in terms of freight's contributions to regional economic development and quality of life. This effort also documents key findings and best practices compiled from conversations with eight freight peers at state DOTs and metropolitan planning organizations around the country. The report helps identify noteworthy examples of freight planning, programming, and outreach. In addition, this effort develops a core set of freight measures and indicators for data collection, data analysis, and planning and policy application.
- Freight Study Summary Report (PDF 338 KB, 13 pp)
- Performance Management Framework Report (PDF 1 MB, 19 pp)
- FHWA Peer to Peer Program Report (PDF 1 MB, 42 pp)
- Report on Peer Best Practices (PDF 1 MB, 52 pp)
- The Importance of Freight to the Twin Cities Economy, a.k.a. "The Story of Freight" (PDF 3.4 MB, 52 pp)
- Opportunities to Strengthen Freight Planning (PDF, 515 KB, 28 pp)
MN&S Freight Rail Study (June 2011)
MnDOT partnered with the Hennepin County Regional Railroad Authority, the city of St. Louis Park and private freight rail companies to conduct an analysis of the potential for relocating TC&W freight rail service from the Kenilworth Corridor to the MN&S line in St. Louis Park. The analysis includes public outreach, a community impact assessment, preliminary engineering, cost estimating, and environmental documentation.
Minnesota Interstate Truck Parking Study - Phase II (November 2010)
The issues examined in this phase of the study include: identifying the State's role in the provision of truck parking; determining which provisions of long term truck parking will provide the greatest support to the State's economy; and, identifying which actions will provide the greatest impact on traffic safety, while taking maximum advantage of effective technology and available federal programs.
- Final Report (PDF 25.4 MB, 107 pp)
The plan provides guidance for rail initiatives and investments in the state, including a vision for effective utilization of the state's rail network and its future development. It more clearly defines private and public sector roles; enhances freight access to markets and efficient, competitive services to rail customers; improvements to overall freight flows and logistics; and identifies priority rail corridors, programs and projects.
- Final Report (PDF 5.5 MB, 224 pp)
Northern Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin Regional Freight Plan (November 2009)
This plan focuses on the transportation of raw materials and forestry products, moving over-dimensional loads such as oil field and wind generation equipment, intermodal transportation enhancements (including but not limited to rail container intermodal facilities and transshipment), and storage of marine cargo at the Port of Duluth.
- Final Report (PDF 8.1 MB, 118 pp)
Using Archived Truck GPS Data for Freight Performance Analysis on I-94/I-90 from the Twin Cities to Chicago (October 2009)
I-94/90 is a key freight corridor for goods transportation between the Twin Cities and Chicago in the Upper Midwest. The study looks at the development of a performance measure derived from average truck travel speed and travel time.
- Final Report (PDF 4.1 MB, 100 pp)
Western Minnesota Regional Freight Plan (September 2009)
This plan focuses on agricultural transportation (e.g., sugar beets, corn, and wheat), manufacturing, and improvement of western truck routes. Targeted study topics include issues regarding border crossings, interstate regulatory discrepancies, rail service, and bottlenecks.
- Final Report (PDF 10.2 MB, 126 pp)
Development of Measurement Sources for Freight Performance Indicators (July 2008)
This report identifies barriers, best available measurement sources, good existing practices, and recommended improvements pertaining to measurement sources for freight performance measures and indicators for Minnesota.
- Final Report (PDF 3.3 MB, 555 pp)
Minnesota Interstate Truck Parking Study - Phase I (January 2008)
This study examined the supply and demand of public and private commercial vehicle parking along Minnesota's three primary Interstate Highway corridors: I-90, I-35, and I-94. It includes an inventory of Minnesota's Interstate truck parking supply, a truck parking demand analysis, and survey results of trucking company practices and attitudes regarding truck parking.
- Final Report (PDF 3.4 MB, 52 pp)
Southwest Minnesota Regional Freight Study (September 2007)
This study provides a detailed, local-level understanding of current freight transportation needs, trends, and issues within the region, and identifies strategies and initiatives for improving the freight transportation system.
Twin Cities Metro Area Freight Connectors Study (October 2006)
Freight Connectors are public roadways, usually county or municipal jurisdiction, that link major freight activity nodes to the arterial highway system, and enable efficient networks serving ports, rail intermodal yards, airports, and other freight intensive nodes.
- Final Report (PDF 6.3 MB, 53 pp)
Minnesota Truck Size and Weight Project (June 2006)
The purpose of the project is to assess changes to Minnesota's truck size and weight laws that would benefit the Minnesota economy while protecting roadway infrastructure and safety.
- Final Report (PDF 3.62 MB, 190 pp)
Minnesota Statewide Commercial Vehicle Weight Enforcement Strategic Plan (June 2005)
This plan was created to help the State of Minnesota improve compliance with truck weight regulations. This plan is based on the belief that better weight compliance will significantly help protect the State’s highway infrastructure and improve safety.
- Final Report (PDF 1.5 MB, 81 pp)
Statewide Heavy Vehicle Safety Plan (June 2005)
The goal of this plan is to reduce fatal and life changing injury crashes through an analysis of relevant crash data and presentation of a comprehensive approach and set of strategies (enforcement, engineering and education) for addressing the identified safety needs.
- Final Report (PDF 2.0 MB, 141 pp)
Trucks and Twin Cities Traffic Management (June 2005)
This CTS/MnDOT report identifies strategies that will reduce congestion for trucks traveling within and through the Twin Cities. The report focuses on issues related to five strategies and their implementation.
- Final Report (PDF 2.8 MB, 181 pp)
2005 Statewide Freight Plan (May 2005)
Cost/Benefit Study: Spring Load Restrictions (March 2005)
This is a CTS/MnDOT study to explore and evaluate the full extent of economic costs of spring load weight enforcement, expected benefits to state/MnDOT of protecting pavement investment, and comparative costs/loss in productivity to the private trucking sector that must comply with the regulations.
- Final Report (PDF 3.1 MB, 317 pp)
Distillate Usage Patterns in Minnesota: Development of Data and Tools to Analyze Policies Affecting Biodiesel Usage (January 2005)
This CTS/MnDOT study identifies utilization of biodiesel blends as part of an overall strategy to reduce ground level ozone and to reduce immediate harm from particulate matter due to diesel engine exhaust.
- Final Report (PDF 214 KB, 46 pp)
Twin Modal Shifts from the Mississippi River & Duluth/Superior to Land Transportation (May 2004)
The primary public policy intent of this CTS/MnDOT study is to advance understanding of the likely impacts of the loss of water access to facilities located in the Minneapolis Upper Harbor area. This study derives a “most likely” scenario of the changed traffic patterns following a loss of water access, resulting in an increase in total truckloads, miles travelled, transport costs, and public costs.
- Final Report (PDF 2.0 MB, 114 pp)
Twin Ports Intermodal Terminal Study (July 2003)
This UMRTC/MnDOT report presents an evaluation of shipper requirements and potential cargo required to establish a rail-truck-marine intermodal terminal in the Twin Ports of Superior, Wisconsin and Duluth, Minnesota.
- Final Report (PDF 8.0 MB, 163 pp)
Commercial Vehicle Operations (CVO) Advanced Traveler Information Systems (ATIS) (June 2003)
This report providesa baseline of national information to help MnDOT make decisions about investments in traveler information systems to better meet the needs of Commercial Vehicle Operators (CVO).
- Final Report (PDF 343 KB, 56 pp)
Adequacy of Freight Connectors to Interregional Corridors and Major Highways (June 2003)
This study identified clusters of freight activity and major roadways serving industries in Minnesota. An initial measure of freight connector adequacy was developed, which addresses the concern of efficient access of freight generating facilities from the IRC system.
- Final Report (PDF 11.2 MB, 116 pp)
ISO 9000’s Effects on Accident Reduction in the U.S. Motor Carrier Industry (June 2003)
This CTS/MnDOT report establishes a correlation between the voluntary ISO 9000 certification by motor carriers and traffic safety. Results show that improvement of operating and quality performance improved safety performance.
- Final Report (PDF 544 KB, 41 pp)
Effects of Increasing Truck Weight on Steel and Prestressed Bridges (March 2003)
This is a CTS/MnDOT study that investigates the impact of an increase in truck loads on bridge structures. Analysis includes the mechanisms of deterioration and how they are affected by increasing loads.
- Final Report (PDF 3.3 MB, 129 pp)
Where Does Minnesota’s Grain Crop Go? An Analysis of Minnesota’s Elevator Grain Shipments for the Period, 7/99-6/00 (February 2002)
This CTS/MnDOT study describes the movement of grain shipments from Minnesota to their final destinations.
- Final Report (PDF 24.5 MB, 168 pp)
Filling the Feed Troughs of Minnesota & Beyond (September 2001)
This CTS/MnDOT study estimates the consumption of feed grains and soybean meal by livestock in each county to identify the production levels of each of the grains and the numbers of livestock available to consume corn, barley, oats, and soybean meal.
- Final Report (PDF 10.8 MB, 76 pp)
Minnesota Statewide Freight Flows Study (April 2000)
This report contains extensive data, maps and analysis on commodity flows by mode, region and major commodities. The report also identifies challenges facing each of the modes of freight transportation in the state, as well as some directions on how to address these issues.
- Final Report (PDF 7.8 MB, 204 pp)
Light Commercial Vehicle Inventory (November 1999)
This report helps identify the extent of light commercial vehicle (LCV) traffic on Twin Cities metropolitan roadways. The inventory results show where LCVs are concentrated geographically, the roads they use, volume profile by time of day, a comparison with heavy commercial vehicles, and the proportion of LCV in the daily traffic flow.
- Final Report (PDF 9.7 MB, 45 pp)