This isn't a roadtrip report per-se, but was an announcement by MnDOT in June, 2002 about delays in over 100 projects due to lack of funding.  The original press release was on June 11, 2002, while I posted it on June 16, 2002.

MnDOT announces deferring of 163 projects

Prepare to Stop
Fewer funds and rising costs put brakes on transportation

St. Paul, MN - The Minnesota Department of Transportation today announced that it will likely defer or drop 163 projects across the state due to projected funding shortfalls. The projects, valued at $1.6 billion, had been scheduled to begin between 2003 and 2012. Department officials said deferral was the only option because funding remains relatively flat while the cost of construction and land continues to escalate. In fact, inflation rates for highway projects have risen 40 percent since the mid-1990s.

"Transportation investments have lagged for 15 years and no new funding again in 2002 means project estimates, schedules and commitments must change. It is our obligation to clarify for the public, elected officials and local governments what we can and cannot accomplish with the dollars we have," said Transportation Commissioner Elwyn Tinklenberg.

- Rest of the article is at .  Supplementing charts and tables, including a list of the deferred projects, is at

My notes:

Many people, particularily in the Twin Cities metro, are not happy with the state Legislature for their failing to enact a transportation funding package this year....much of that failure rests with the state House, where Republicans were both against a major tax increase and funding for transit, while Democrats wanted additional transit funding and a limit on the highway funding increase. This announcement by MnDOT is not surprising...and was expected in some quarters, given both the state revenue shortfalls and the federal transportation funding reductions.

I took a quick look at the projects being deferred or delayed. Of note:

- The "Unweave the Weave" project, which would reconstruct and widen the I-35E/I-694 duplex and interchanges, previously scheduled for 2005...delayed until 2008.

- The I-35W/MN 62 "Crosstown Commons", delayed looking like a 2006 start.

- Widening I-494 from MN 5 WEST/US 212 to I-94, delayed an average of 4 years (2007-09 to 2011+).

- The new "Stillwater Bridge" (MN 36/WI 64), delayed from 2004-05 until after 2012. I don't think the existing bridge will last that long.

- MN 60 from the IA line to I-90, Stage 1 delayed from 2005 to 2007, other stages delayed until after 2012.

- Ongoing 4-laning of US 14 between Mankato and Rochester, delayed an average of 2 years.

- Upgrading US 52 to freeway from northern Rochester to Pine Island: delayed from 2005-07 timeframe to 2007-2011 timeframe.

- MN 371 4-laning from Little Falls to Brainerd, Stage 3 (near MN 115) delayed from 2005 to 2006 (this is a major recreational route...should've been 4-laned 20 years ago).

- MN 371 4-laning from Nisswa (end of existing 4-lane) to Pine River: delayed from 2006-08 to 2011-12.

- Ongoing reconstruction and improvements to MN 61 between Duluth and the Canadian border: delayed an average of 1-2 years.

All in all, many people are ticked off that this happened, but it wasn't surprising (at least to me). Some of the more reactionary types have called for Tinklenberg's resignation, claiming he's concentrating too much on transit....but the issues go far deeper than that. I expect transportation to be a major issue (if not the top issue) come election time this November (in addition to the usual Legislature slots, Minnesota elects a governer this year).

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