We have a pretty sweet deal here. While many of us enjoy suburban or smaller town life, we’re a short drive from the Twin Cities.
Smaller communities such as Rogers and Champlin hold down the fort on the northern edge of the district; Eden Prairie, Victoria, and Chaska do the job on the southern end. We are deeply proud of our communities. We understand why gorgeous Lake Minnetonka is such a draw for boaters and diners. We know how to correctly pronounce Wayzata and Edina.
Our cities are growing and changing. Only well-maintained, expanded, and improved Minnesota infrastructure will assure the highest level of economic viability—and safety—for us and our families.
Our legislators need to hear from us. Click the Raise Our Grade button and let them know you support investment in our infrastructure.
Our district’s urgent needs
Infrastructure projects will address critical problems, prepare structures for current and future capacity, and maintain, expand, and improve essential systems. Much-needed funding will cover design/engineering, materials, and construction.
A Short Story Of Infrastructure: An Expanding Community, A Better Life
At the end of a workday on a winter evening, the snaking line of red brake lights stretches miles into the distance—another major backup on I-94 and I-494 going north.
It’s a nightly ritual in fast-growing Maple Grove. Years ago, the city began attracting medical technology companies, manufacturing, distribution centers, and other thriving businesses. The employees of these enterprises arrived with their families, looking for homes in this comfortable community.
And with growth came traffic. Lots of it.
But state and federal funding for improved roads and added lanes has been frustratingly piecemeal. Deferred for decades, infrastructure investment has not kept pace with need.
It’s a reality faced by many Minnesota communities. Without enough proactive building, projects have stalled and choke points have proliferated. Dollars have trickled in each year, but there are never enough to cover identified needs or to solve bottlenecks and safety concerns.
The Positive Effects Of Investment
When investment in infrastructure does occur, it makes a marked difference. After a third lane was added on I-494 heading south from Rogers to Maple Grove, traffic flowed freely—no more 4-6 mile backups each morning. Today, the problem exists on the other side of the interstate, from the interchange of 610 and I-94 where backups stretch south on I-494 North.
Additional funds would fix this bottleneck. They would allow roads to be completed so people could avoid taking long detours or back roads. County roads could go from two-lane to four-lane. Roadways could be added or improved. A smooth corridor to St. Cloud could be planned and completed. Delays caused by highway constrictions to and from the Twin Cities could be solved.
Losing 40 minutes to an hour every day interferes with business and commerce, and severely affects people’s quality of life. Instead of being home playing with their children or firing up the grill, they’re stuck in traffic. Over the last 20 years, transportation issues have been the number one concern brought up on resident polls. The roads need to work better.
Getting Stronger With Infrastructure
Maple Grove—an economic success story—keeps growing. Businesses continue to bring their operations and tax dollars here. Infrastructure investments can provide a firm foundation for this city while they strengthen and improve towns and cities around the state.
Funding For Quality Of Life
In 2018, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) gave Minnesota roads a D+ grade in their infrastructure report card—a poor/at risk rating. We know our roads and bridges are subpar. Bad roads lengthen our commute time and damage our vehicles. They affect commerce in our cities and states.
But—as the ASCE report shows—every aspect of Minnesota infrastructure needs improvement: airports, ports, dams, water treatment…. Our country and state require infrastructure funding to ensure our ability to compete in the world, bring us the goods we need, and contribute to our safety, our economy, and our convenience.
We must have infrastructure spending now to maintain our quality of life—and to assure a good life will be possible for our children and grandchildren in the future. We must Raise Our Grade, Minnesota.
Story images © City of Maple Grove
Funding for Quality of Life image © Minnesota Department of Transportation