Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Traffic Safety Encouraged During Holiday Weekend

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Although most road construction is shut down over the Labor Day holiday, there are still highway work zones in place around the state, and the Minnesota Department of Transportation urges motorists to use extra caution while driving  this weekend.
“Although major construction projects will be on hold for the weekend, motorists may still encounter lane restrictions and traffic delays,” said Commissioner Charlie Zelle. “Your safety is important to us, so we ask that you plan your routes, stay alert and drive carefully in work zones.”

Changes for the weekend include the removal of the detour for Highway 169 between St. Peter and Mankato, and opening all lanes of traffic on Interstate 94 between St. Cloud and Collegeville.

Highway projects that may affect weekend travel Sept. 2-5 include:
Twin Cities area
·         Highway 61 in Forest Lake – single-lane traffic
·         Highway 36 at Lexington Avenue – Lexington Avenue closed, eastbound lanes of Highway 36 on a bypass and ramp closures
·         I-94 between St. Paul and Maplewood – two lanes westbound and three lanes eastbound open, crews working in median Friday and Saturday
·         I-494 in Plymouth – multiple lane and ramp closures
·         Highway 100 in St. Louis Park – ramp closures and lane shift
·         I-694 between Rice Street in Little Canada and Lexington Avenue in Arden Hills – westbound traffic split into two lanes, Rice Street and Lexington Avenue ramps now open
·         Highway 8 between Highway 95 and Taylor Falls – closed, detour
·         Highway 25 in Buffalo – detour, lane closures on Highway 55 at intersection
·         Highway 5 bridge between St. Paul and MSP Airport – single lane traffic and ramp closures

Central Minnesota 
·         I-94 between St. Cloud and Collegeville – all lanes open from noon on Thursday through Tuesday at 9 a.m.
·         Highway 169 north of Milaca – one lane each direction, slow or stopped traffic (major delays)
·         I-35 between Pine City and Hinckley – lane shifts and slow traffic (major delays)
·         I-94/Highway 29 in Alexandria – single lane on Highway 29, expect delays near I-94

Northern Minnesota   
·         County Road 11 in Pequot Lakes – closed east of Highway 371 – detour
·         Highway 371 in Pequot Lakes – temporary signal at Derkson Road, County Road 11 detour
·         I-94/Highway 75 in Moorhead – ramp closures, detour
·         Highway 61 just north of Grand Marais – single lane
·         Highway 61 south of Two Harbors between the Homestead Road and the Knife River Bridge – single laneProject complete
·         I-535 Blatnik Bridge in Duluth – both southbound lanes and one northbound lane closed, detour
·         Highway 9 between Ada and Borup – detour

Southern Minnesota    
·         Highway 169 between St. Peter and Mankato – lane restrictions
·         Highway 14 between Nicollet and New Ulm - detour
·         Highway 23 between Granite Falls and Cottonwood - detour
·         Highway 52 at Highway 63 in Rochester – single lane traffic
For a complete list of projects, including construction dates and traffic impacts, visit Motorists may also sign up to receive email updates for major projects at

MnDOT reminds motorists to “Move Over”

BEMIDJI, Minn. – The Minnesota Department of Transportation reminds motorists that on a road with two or more lanes, drivers must move over one full lane from stopped emergency vehicles that have their flashing lights activated. That includes ambulance, fire, law enforcement, maintenance, construction vehicles and tow trucks. If it is not safe to move over, the driver should slow down.

The Move Over Law is named after State Trooper Ted Foss, who was struck and killed by a passing semitrailer truck while conducting a traffic stop on Aug. 31, 2000. The law is intended to keep emergency workers safe, and prevent motorists from crashing into stopped vehicles.

For real-time traffic and travel information anywhere in Minnesota, visit, call 5-1-1 or log on to

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Volunteers Invited to Serve on National Public Lands Day in Park Rapids

Park Rapids, MN (9/24/2016) - The University of Minnesota-Extension Master Naturalist Program, in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, invites Park Rapids-area residents to participate in National Public Lands Day (NPLD) on September 24th, 2016 from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M.

According to the National Environmental Education Foundation, volunteers will participate in the largest, single-day volunteer effort for public lands. Since 2012, the Minnesota Master Naturalist Program has facilitated this effort at sites across the state. More than 600 volunteers have removed invasive species, planted pollinator gardens, and protected newly-planted trees, among other projects, for over 3,000 service hours to date. This year, the MN Master Naturalist Program encourages residents to join this growing tradition of stewardship through service at one of 14 locations in Minnesota.

Volunteer registration closes August 26th, 2016. To register, go to: to find the National Public Lands Day sites facilitated by the Minnesota Master Naturalist program. During registration, registrants will be asked for a t-shirt size and dietary needs as each volunteer will receive a free NPLD t-shirt and an on-site lunch. Youth are welcome to attend at most sites, but volunteers will be responsible for supervision.  Please let the program know if you are planning to bring youth..

Volunteers at Itasca State Park will place paper “bud caps” on white, red, and jack pines. All supplies will be provided at the park. They are advised to wear long pants, long shirt sleeves, sturdy footwear, and to bring personal snacks, water bottle, and gloves.

Itasca State Park is located at 36750 Main Park Drive Park Rapids, MN 56470.