But Where Does the Bridge Go?

Rice County, along with its “study partners,” including the City of Dundas, City of Northfield, Bridgewater Township, Northfield Township, and the Minnesota Department of Transportation, have initiated something called the CSAH 1 Corridor Preservation Study. The idea behind the study is to identify potential routes for an east-west arterial road south of Hwy. 19, since the 2025 Rice County Transportation Plan indicates that such a road may be needed. Hey, it’s never too soon to start planning.

The map here shows the defined corridor area. You can see the various concepts under consideration, and an evaluation matrix, out on the County’s website. The information contains some interesting little tidbits. (Do you know where the “leaking underground storage tanks” are in YOUR neighborhood? )

The goal of the study is stated as: Identify a safe and efficient corridor alignment option for further planning, preservation, and environmental analysis based on an objective evaluation of alternatives.

The evaluation criteria is as follows:

1. Corridor achieves a direct, continuous route between I-35 and TH 246 that is an attractive
alternative to TH 19 between Northfield and I-35.
2. Design speed of 45 mph or greater can be met in urbanizing areas, 55 mph or greater in
rural areas.
3. Roadway intersection access spacing of 1/4 mile or greater can be achieved.
4. Controlled intersection spacing of 1/2 mile or greater can be achieved.
5. A 150 or greater right-of-way width can be accommodated.
6. Proposed corridor can accommodate a grade-separated crossing of the Union Pacific
7. The length of the roadway is minimized while still meeting other study objectives.
8. Connectivity to north/south existing or future collector roadways can be accommodated.
9. Access and controlled intersection spacing along TH 3 can be planned for consistent with
Mn/DOT’s access spacing guidelines and agreed to by participating agencies.
10. Corridor location could enhance future commuter rail or transit station opportunities.

Since citizens often aren’t aware of formal decisions until after they’re made, I thought it would be helpful if more people knew about this now, rather than in 2015.


  1. Ross Currier said:

    Yo Tracy:

    Sweet blog posting.

    Maybe we could get Betsey Buckheit and Galen Malecha to weigh in on this topic.

    See ya downtown,


    October 14, 2006
  2. Stephanie Henriksen said:

    I attended the corridor study presentation Friday morning, Oct. 13. Most interesting was the big chart that showed cost estimates for the various routes, ranging from about $26 million to $36 million, with some routes shaving off costs in anticipation of charging the developments as they come in. Earlier choice of route by the Dundas Planning Commission had no cost info.

    The Harold Paulson “Bridgewater Heights” development got in without proper road improvements, something that continues to haunt us in the township. Many township residents resent having to bear the burden of the car and truck traffic from Dundas’ ill-planned developments. We will see how Dundas residents view what has been going on when we see election results for Dundas mayor and council seats.

    Stephanie Henriksen, Bridgewater Township

    October 16, 2006
  3. Lance said:

    As long as we’re projecting out to 2025, when I’ll likely be “back to nature” in a VERY direct way, it seems to me an east-west route should be part of a greater plan to open up this area to better access to outstate Minnesota – particularly the northern 2/3rds. The only practical way now involves fighting twin cities traffic. Does this make sense, or is it more like all my other dumb ideas??

    October 16, 2006
  4. Donna said:

    If I’m reading the proposed maps correctly (and it’s quite possible I’m not!) and an east-west corridor is the main concern, why does the upgraded road end in the middle of 115th Street at the Bridgewater Heights addition?

    October 17, 2006
  5. […] Kathleen Doran-Norton commented on my blog entry (”Now Where was that Transportation List?‘) by raising the Rice County Transportation Plan’s study of an east-west corridor study, mentioned by Tracy Davis in an earlier blog entry (”But Where does the Bridge Go?“). Kathleen’s comments actually raises an even bigger issue…the State’s transportation plans may have passed Highway 19 by. […]

    November 3, 2006

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