Representatives with Yaggy Colby & Associates and MnDOT were on hand during the evening Dec. 6 at the Spring Valley Community Center to share information with area residents on the Minnesota State Highway 16 road resurfacing project set for next summer, which will cover 16 miles from Spring Valley to Preston.

The project, estimated to cost the state $4.8 million, is funded through the Better Roads for a Better Minnesota program. It was noted by MnDOT Community Relations Coordinator Kristin Kammueller that this special funding allowed MnDOT to focus on lower volume roads sooner than expected.

Kjersti Anderson, project manager with MnDOT, noted, "This is a preservation project."

Anderson said bids would be let in January and by mid-February the contract will be awarded.

Construction will begin in early June, timed when school is out of session, and is estimated to be complete in early fall. The project includes a mill and overlay of the highway, with 20 culvert replacements. It was noted these are deep culverts - some 15 to 20 ft. - and it will take time to replace them.

There will be two detours used during the replacement of the culverts, which is expected to last a month and a half with the section from Spring Valley to State Highway 80 expected to take approximately three weeks. After the culverts are replaced, the road will be open to vehicles and the remainder of the construction would take place with flagmen and a pilot car directing traffic. MnDOT will make sure residents along the route have access to their properties.

The detours will be Fillmore County Road 12 east out of Spring Valley to County Road 5, then continuing north on 5 to intersect with State Highway 16. From there it will cross 16 and go north on Highway 80 to Wykoff and east out of Wykoff to Fountain, and connect with Minnesota State Highway 52, where one can travel south to Preston.

When residents asked about what will be done to fix the bumps on the highway, Don Miller with Yaggy Colby & Associates said 50 faulted old concrete joints have been found that cause that problem. He said the contractor will be digging these out and reconstructing them to restore a smooth ride.

Rumble strips will be constructed once again on the sides of the highway and the road will remain the same width - a 12 ft. lane with 2 ft. shoulders. It was noted new guardrails would be installed to replace the old ones.

Lyle Affeldt, who lives on 230th Street southeast of Wykoff, was one interested resident in the small crowd of those attending the meeting. He attended to hear details about the project and find out where the detours would be located.

Affeldt said he is glad the project is being completed. "It's needed," he said, adding, "It's been needed a long time."