After being paused for a number of years, the Highway 23 realignment and Mission Creek Bridge replacement project south of Gary-New Duluth is back on the schedule for completion by the Minnesota Department of Transportation. As we get ready for another road construction season, MNDOT will be providing updates and an opportunity to get questions answered at an upcoming public meeting.

The meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday, March 15 starting at 6:00 PM.  For this particular meeting, the Minnesota Department of Transportation is offering both an in person meeting session and an online portion; participants are able to choose which method works best for them.

Those looking to take part in the meeting in person can join the session at the Gary New Duluth Rec Center, which is located at 801 101st Avenue West.  Online participants can use the link to the virtual session which is available on the project home page that the Minnesota Department of Transportation has on their website. Additionally, the state agency has plans to upload a video recording of the meeting session for viewing by the public after the event.

Minnesota Highway 23 junction road sign
Nick Cooper - TSM Duluth

4Actual construction on parts of the project are scheduled to start this spring.  Careful readers will remember that the Highway 23/Mission Creek Bridge work was put on hold in the spring of 2017 after disturbance of a Native American burial site.  Since that time, MNDOT has worked in collaboration with the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Minnesota Indian Affairs Council, and the Office of the State Archeologist to "help respectfully complete burial recovery and restore the cemetery site".

Progress was made in November 2019 when "processed soils were returned to the cemetery area and the central slope was stabilized."  Since that time, work on the restoration has progressed and is an ongoing part of the project.

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MNDOT has contracted with landscape architect Urban Ecosystems to develop a final design for restoring the site.  Restoration efforts will begin along with the rest of the project in  the spring of 2022.

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