Tough travel ahead on MN 36

Traffic changes coming east of Osgood; Hilton Trail closes

A portable sign on Minnesota 36 west of the Osgood Avenue intersection warns motorists that traffic lane changes on eastbound MN 36 occur Tuesday. The changes are part of construction work on the Minnesota approach to the new St. Croix River bridge east of Osgood Avenue. (Gazette staff photo by Erik Sandin)

A portable sign on Minnesota 36 west of the Osgood Avenue intersection warns motorists that traffic lane changes on eastbound MN 36 occur Tuesday. The changes are part of construction work on the Minnesota approach to the new St. Croix River bridge east of Osgood Avenue. (Gazette staff photo by Erik Sandin)

Travel to and from the St. Croix Valley on Minnesota 36 will become more challenging starting Tuesday.

Traffic changes on MN 36 east of Osgood Avenue and on northbound and southbound Minnesota 95 between Lookout Trail and Point Road are tentatively scheduled for early Tuesday, according to state Department of Transportation officials.

St. Croix Crossing project spokeswoman Jessica Wiens said crews will take 12 to 14 hours to make the switches on MN 36 and MN 95.

“Tuesday will be a big day,” she said. “There’s the traffic switch on Highway 36 and the new signal on Highway 95,”

Wiens said motorists might not notice the switch early Tuesday, but will see an impact later in the day. Motorists traveling on MN 95 this week will be moved to a temporary bypass by flaggers for utility work across MN 95 at 58th Street, she added.

The traffic changes coming to MN 36 and MN 95 Tuesday are part of the St. Croix Crossing bridge project and in addition to the earlier closing of MN 36 from White Bear Avenue to U.S. Highway 61 for the English Street interchange project in Maplewood and Monday’s closing of both directions of Hilton Trail as part of that interchange project.

Besides the traffic changes coming this week, Wiens said MnDOT expects to close the Beach Road bridge and ramps to and from MN 36 and MN 95 late this month or early August. Both the current Beach Road bridge and the ramps will be demolished and new spans constructed as part of the Minnesota approach to the St. Croix bridge.

A MnDOT news release said a weekend closure of MN 95 might occur in early August for removal of the eastbound MN 36 flyover bridge to northbound MN 95.
MnDOT officials anticipate the new MN 95 ramps to and from MN 36 to be open by September, with the new Beach Road bridge open by the end of the year.

With the permanent closure of the Beach Road bridge ramps, access to homes and businesses north of MN 36 is available at Osgood Avenue. Access to homes and businesses south of MN 36 is available at Osgood Avenue and the new South Frontage Road extending to Beach Road-Stagecoach Trail.

Detours to and from MN 95 are available to southbound 95 from eastbound MN 36 by traveling south on Minnesota 5 and then east on County Road 14. Access to westbound MN 36 if available from northbound 95 by traveling west on 56th Street North, south on Stagecoach Trail, west on CR 14 and north on MN 5.

Wiens said in addition to the lane changes, crews will begin hauling excess dirt from the MN 36-95 junction day and night Monday through Saturday beginning late this month through October. Trucks will haul from the site on Beach Road, Stagecoach Trail and Osprey Street in Bayport to a Baytown Township site, she added.

“The site it is going to is the Miller Pit dump site in Baytown Township, and we’ve got approval from Baytown Township,” she said.

MnDOT project officials will hold a public meeting about the Beach Road bridge construction from 5:30 to 7 p.m. July 22 at Oak Park Heights City Hall, 14168 Oak Park Boulevard North. Short presentations are at 5:45 and 6:30 p.m.

Bridge-related work continues in the St. Croix River, with crews working on four of the five pier foundation locations. Work on the pier closest to the Minnesota shoreline is expected to resume this week and work on the fifth pier is expected to be underway in mid-August.

Although the state Department of Natural Resources lifted a no-wake restriction on the river, a no-wake zone is in effect in the designated work channel marked by buoys along the Minnesota and Wisconsin shorelines.

Call 1-855-GO-CROIX, visit www.mndot.gov/stcroixcrossing or email stcroixcrossing.dot@state.mn.us for more information about the project.

Contact Erik Sandin at erik.sandin@ecm-inc.com

up arrow