Ham Lake hopes to rebuild Highway 65 service road

102hlservicerdMid.jpgThe city of Ham Lake will once again try to acquire half-a-million
dollars from the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to
reconstruct the service road on the west side of Highway 65 from 176th
to 179th avenues.


by Eric Hagen
Staff writer

The city of Ham Lake will once again try to acquire half-a-million dollars from the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to reconstruct the service road on the west side of Highway 65 from 176th to 179th avenues.

102hlservicerdthumb.jpg

Ham Lake applied for a cooperative agreement grant from the Minnesota Department of Transportation totaling about half-a-million dollars to reconstruct the service road on the west side of Highway 65 between 176th and 179th avenues. Photo by Eric Hagen

City Engineer Tom Collins said the city closed the Highway 65 crossover at 177th Avenue in 2005 to improve the safety. He hopes the city will ultimately not be penalized for closing this access a few years before the service road reconstruction takes place.

The city applied for approximately $500,000 from MnDOT’s cooperative grant program last year, but only received an offer of $10,800 in October 2007.

The city rejected this offer. At its Dec. 15 meeting, the Ham Lake City Council approved applying for $503,788.14.

Collins plans to stress how the city took steps to close the 177th Avenue crossover earlier than it needed to.

“We’re trying to point out that we’re being penalized for improving the safety of Highway 65 prior to this project,” Collins said at the Dec. 15 meeting regarding MnDOT’s initial $10,800 offer.

MnDOT encourages service roads to reduce traffic on major thoroughfares like Highway 65 and it encourages closure of crossovers and accesses that are not signalized to improve the safety along these major roads.

The cooperative agreement grant program helps cities complete these projects.

The city of East Bethel received $612,955 to construct a new service road segment on the east side of Highway 65 between 205th and 209th avenues.

In exchange, the city of East Bethel agreed to close the 205th Avenue crossover and eliminate the direct access off Highway 65 to the East Bethel Ice Arena parking lot.

It will probably be late February until the city finds out if it will receive any assistance, Collins said.

Eric Hagen is at eric.hagen@ecm-inc.com.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.