Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Hwy 246 resurfacing

Nerstrand

Public meetings and events

April 2024 Community Feedback

Thank you to everyone who provided their comments. People participated in a public meeting at Boots and Lu's Cafe on April 2, 2024 or reviewed the information on-line.

Public meeting summary

Community members received project updates, reviewed detour, construction information and ask questions. All participants were able to engage with staff and have in-depth conversations. Attendees typically came in and began talking with the project staff before looking at the boards. The most popular station boards were the Local Traffic Access During Construction as it gave attendees an understanding of how their daily commutes may be impacted once construction begins. The Guardrail Replacement board was viewed fairly often as this helped attendees visualize how the road would look upon completion.

In general, attendees left with most of their questions answered and while no comment forms were submitted, many attendees verbalized their comments to the project team.

Common quesions

  • This project will add a minimum of 2" of surface pavement to the existing pavement. The intent is to correct as much settlement and cracking as possible to extend the use, but it will likely continue to settle and undergo cracking. This overlay may be able to extend the pavement life another 14 years at most.

  • Those conversations have occurred over many years and are still being discussed, but there is currently no agreed upon plan for ownership to change during the next several years. MnDOT is still expecting to plow and maintain this roadway.

  • An existing box culvert crosses under the road near this site. The open ends of that culvert don't extend far enough from the roadway edge to safely push the guardrail any further back. Replacing or extending the length of that culvert would be more expensive than this project could accommodate. This project intends to replace the west guardrail in the same location. The east guardrail would be pushed back from the road by 2 feet more to utilize the full width of the culvert.

  • The additional cost to add a larger curve here was difficult to justify based on the very low volume of traffic using this road. A decision was made to keep the existing curve and add the pavement overlay to the existing intersection instead.

  • Construction would start in July 2025 and complete by November 2025. During that time through traffic would be detoured south (see detour map). Local access within the project site would continue, but routes using county roads will continue to change based on where construction work was occurring along highway 246.

June-July 2023 Community Feedback

What we heard from the community
Beginning June 12 through July 5, 2023, MnDOT hosted an in person public meeting as well as a virtual, self-paced engagement asking community members for input on their experiences and usage of Hwy 246. Approximately 19 people attended the public meeting and left comments on comment cards and the tabletop maps. Around 56 surveys were submitted on the virtual engagement. This public feedback helped develop the final design.

Key findings:

  • Peoples primary use of Hwy 246 is either as a road for their daily commutes or as a connection to southern cities
    • Many participants stated they use this area to commute to work and back home. Others mentioned its importance for getting to the neighboring cities as well as using it for walks and other pedestrian activities
    • Participants use Hwy 246 as a connection to get to their place of work which is farther south. Some of the cities listed include Rochester, Wanamingo, and Pine Island
  • Community members have a wide range in experiences travelling on Hwy 246 either with vehicles, bikes, commercial equipment, or as pedestrians. Despite this, the majority of participants agreed on the same issue.
    • The most common concern that was voiced was the lack of shoulder along the highway making it overall feel very narrow. Many participants found this to be an issue for a variety of reasons but one of the most repeated issues was because it made farm equipment hard to move on the highway

Thank you to everyone who provided input either at the in-person public meeting or on the self-paced virtual engagement.

MnDOT invites and encourages participation by all. If you need an ASL, a foreign language interpreter, or other reasonable accommodation, or need documents in an alternative format (such as braille or large print), please email your request to Janet Miller at ADArequest.dot@state.mn.us or call 651-366-4720.