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A massive road construction project along parts of Highway 52 is scheduled to start soon, and it could lead to some delays in on one of Minnesota's busiest highways.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) is set to announce its statewide road construction project on Wednesday, April 12th. But it's getting a headstart on one big project here in the Land of 10,000 Lakes that will mean travelers along Highway 52 should get ready to see a lot of those orange barrels soon.

Actually, if you've driven along Highway 52 south of the Twin Cities between Zumbrota and Cannon Falls in the last week or so, you've already no doubt seen some of those orange barrels along the side of the road. That can only mean a big project is imminent, right?

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As it turns out, as long as Mother Nature cooperates (which right now looks like she will), a big MnDOT project to redo the southbound lanes of Highway 52 is scheduled to start Monday, April 10th. And MnDOT says it will likely cause traffic delays through the construction zone during mornings, evenings, and weekends.

This year is the third and final year of that massive three-year project along Highway 52 between Zumbrota and Cannon Falls. It started back in July of 2021, then in November of 2022, the new interchange at the intersection of Highway 52 and Highway 57 was opened to traffic.

MnDOT says there are two separate work zones on Highway 52 that are set to take place during the 2023 season:

  • The northern work zone will begin at Goodhue Co. Rd. 24 in Cannon Falls and extend to approximately Goodhue Co. Rd. 9.
  • The southern work zone will begin at 415th St. (just north of Goodhue Co. Rd. 50) and extend to Goodhue Co. Rd. 68 (445th St.) in Zumbrota.

You can read more details about which sections will be down to single lanes HERE. The following specific projects will be worked on this year:

  • Replace the Hwy 52 southbound bridge over the Zumbro River.
  • Reconstruct Hwy 52 southbound from Goodhue Co. Rd. 24 in Cannon Falls to (4,000 feet) north of Co. Rd. 9.
  • Reconstruct Hwy 52 southbound from Co. Rd. 50 to 1.3 miles north of Goodhue Co. Rd. 7.
  • Construct frontage roads and cul de sacs.
  • Construct noise wall along northbound Hwy 52 south of Hwy 58 interchange at Zumbrota.

The entire project isn't expected to be complete until later this fall, so remember to pack your patience as you head up and down Highway 52 this spring and summer!

And while sitting in a traffic back-up due to road construction can be annoying, at least we'll be able to drive on a brand new road when it's done. Unlike the following intersections in Rochester, which are just plain annoying all the time. Keep scrolling to check 'em out!

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