Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Highway 243 Osceola Bridge

Franconia Township MN and Osceola WI

Public engagement

Public meeting engagement summary

March 2022

The Minnesota Department of Transportation in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation is in the process of designing the reconstruction of the Hwy 243/Osceola Bridge over the St. Croix National and Scenic Riverway. Over the month of March 2022, the project team shared information about the alternatives under consideration and gathered community feedback, questions, and ideas. The engagement period started with a virtual public meeting on March 3, 2022. A total of 126 attendees joined the meeting.

Meeting materials, including video recording of the virtual meeting presentation, were posted to the project website. Members of the public were able to access the materials online and provide comment through the online questionnaire and comment portal. Hard copies of the presentation and comment cards were placed at City Hall and the Library in Osceola.

Engagement details

Shows 127 comments received, and more than 200 impressions on the open house materials. Also shows graph breakdown of comments received by type, with more than 95% of comments coming from online submissions (web, online open house, survey).

Key comment themes

Shows breakdown of comments by theme. Top three comment themes are: alternative details; concerns about construction impacts and detours; concerns about environmental impacts.

Comment period summary


The project team implemented a public comment period on the Hwy 243 Osceola Bridge Purpose and Need documentation. The 15-day public comment period ran from May 19, 2021 through June 4, 2021. Interested parties could submit comments through the project website, via email, or in writing to MnDOT.

The project website was updated with the following materials:

  • Purpose & Need document
  • Logical Termini document
  • Alternatives Evaluation Criteria document

The public was allowed to provide questions and feedback through a comment portal on the project website.

Media outreach

Media outreach was conducted as part of the Purpose and Need public comment period. This outreach included:

  • MnDOT web announcement
  • WisDOT web announcement
  • Chisago County web announcement
  • Polk County web announcement
  • Franconia Township web announcement
  • Village of Osceola web announcement
  • MnDOT Public Notice News Release
  • WisDOT Public Notice News Release
  • MnDOT Gov Delivery Email
  • Village of Osceola Chamber of Commerce Email
  • Advertisements placed in two local newspapers, the Osceola Sun and the Chisago County Press.
  • An interview of PM Dmitry Tomasevich in the Osceola Sun.

Public comments received

A total of 92 comments were received between May 19, 2021 through June 7, 2021. An additional three comments were received between June 12, 2021 and August 31, 2021. More than 62 percent of comments received to date highlight the need for a bike and pedestrian path.