Mora, MN – The Highway 23 Coalition gathered with its members on Friday, April 14th at Freddie’s Restaurant and Banquet Center in Mora, Minnesota. The Highway 23 Coalition is a bi-partisan, non-profit organization with a vision of a 4-lane connected highway throughout the Highway 23 Corridor from Duluth/Superior to Pipestone/Sioux Falls. The Coalition has worked for several years to advocate for this mission, along with its members.
A Successful Gathering
Highway 23 Coalition members gathered to share in the successes and plans for what’s next. Attendees consisted of an impressive cross section of those affected by the Highway 23 Corridor including counties, cities, businesses, non-profit organizations, MnDOT representatives, prospective members and additional attendees.
This gathering of public and private supporters heard from a number of guest speakers providing input and updates about the state of Highway 23. Featured guest speakers included Tom Cruikshank, District 3 Principal Planner for MnDOT, Nancy Daubenberg, MnDOT Commissioner and Congressman Pete Stauber.
“You’re going to see businesses come back to Minnesota. Safe roads help guide that.” Representative Pete Stauber states in a comment to why it’s important to support initiatives like the Highway 23 Coalition.
Corridors of Commerce Applications
The Highway 23 Coalition submitted an application for Corridors of Commerce funding and is waiting in great anticipation for awards to be announced.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation shared a significant update at the Highway 23 Coalition Annual Meeting stating that awards for Corridors of Commerce applications will be delayed. The delay comes because of MnDOT’s need for clarification on the division of favoritism which determines how funding is spent across the state.
Announcements were originally set to be made May 1st and have been delayed until the end of the legislative session to allow time for the clarification.
Priority Project Highlight: Corridor Study Hwy 65 & Hwy 23
Attendees were given the opportunity to learn more about the current progress on the Mora Highway 65 and Highway 23 Corridor Study from Tom Cruikshank, Principal Planner, District 3, Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT).
Highway 65 and Highway 23 in Mora are heavily traveled roads that serve the local community and greater region. MnDOT, in partnership with the City of Mora and Kanabec County, is conducting a study to understand the Corridor's needs, identify potential improvements and develop an ultimate vision for the future. Learn more about the study and project schedule here.
This summer will be a busy one with work continuing on the Highway 23 North Gap (Paynesville to Richmond) as well as groundbreaking on the South Gap.
The Highway 23 Coalition continues to work on moving the 2023 Priority Projects forward. By supporting these projects, the Coalition hopes to change the transportation system of Minnesota and make the entire state a more equitable and safer place to live, travel and open a business.