Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

Aug. 21, 2018

MnDOT showcases innovation, environmentally friendly transportation solutions at 2018 State Fair

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Visitors to the Minnesota Department of Transportation booth at the 2018 State Fair will see a number of ways the agency is applying innovative, cost-effective and environmentally friendly solutions to transportation issues.

“MnDOT prides itself in planning, building and maintaining a safe, accessible and reliable transportation network that connects people and businesses to destinations and markets throughout the world,” said Commissioner Charlie Zelle. “The Minnesota State Fair lets us showcase what we do for the people we serve to make for a Better Minnesota. We hope fairgoers stop by to chat and see some of the latest innovations we’re exploring.”

MnDOT will feature its use of innovative or technological solutions to transportation issues on several days at its booth in the Education Building. Visitors can stop by to check out equipment and models of these solutions, and speak with knowledgeable staff.

  • Monday, Aug. 27 (9 a.m. to 9 p.m.) – Connected and Automated Vehicles. This technology has the potential to reduce crashes by minimizing human factors during driving. Minnesota is monitoring and testing how CAV works in winter weather conditions.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 28 (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) – Hydraulics Inspection Vehicle Explorer. This remote-controlled vehicle, created by MnDOT staff using off-the-shelf hobby shop parts, helps crews inspect pipes and culverts. It’s already helped the state reduce costs and save time, and was recognized with a Governor’s Better Government Award for Great Results.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 29 (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) – Drones. MnDOT’s been testing these unmanned aerial systems for several years and uses them in mapping, surveying and inspecting the state’s many bridges.
  • Thursday, Aug. 30 (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) – Northern Lights Express. Come see the corridor model of the proposed higher speed passenger rail project that would provide rail service between Minneapolis and Duluth. 
  • Friday, Aug. 31 (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) – Living snow fences. Learn about MnDOT’s partnership with farmers to create living snow fences (e.g., rows of trees, shrubs, native grasses and wildflowers located along roads or around communities and farmsteads) that help trap snow before it reaches a road. This helps improve driver visibility and reduces maintenance costs and plow time.

Visitors are also invited to pick up the 2017-18 state highway map at the booth, as well as get their photo taken against a green screen and superimposed in a “transportation setting.”
MnDOT staff will also be present in other locations:

  • Aug. 23-Sept. 3 – Eco Experience –MnDOT staff participates in the Kick Gas, Tilting to Transit, Vanpooling and Safety Town exhibits emphasizing transit, traffic safety and safe routes to school along with distributing state bike maps
  • Aug. 23-Sept. 3 -- Experimental Aircraft Association’s Spirit of Aviation exhibit located on NE corner of Judson Ave. and Nelson St., is a STEM based interactive display with hands-on activities, virtual technology and flight simulators.
  • Aug. 23 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) – MnDOT staff will be participating in STEM Day in Dan Patch Park near the Grandstand. Bring children K-12 to engage in science, technology, engineering and math activities, including trying out a snowplow simulator.
  • Aug. 27-30 (2 p.m.) – See the MnDOT snowplow and Minnesota GoMobile in the daily parade down Cosgrove Street.