Working with the Minnesota Department of Transportation and consultant SRF Consulting, Olmsted County is looking at options for future reconstruction of U.S. 14.
The study currently underway is looking at the corridor that runs between the interchange at Minnesota Highway 57 at Kasson and Olmsted County Road 104/60th Avenue Northwest. Of the four options put forth during a virtual meeting Wednesday night, all the options close access to Highway 14 at 260th Avenue in Dodge County, and each option includes an interchange at Olmsted County Road 104. However, each option differs from there, said Craig Vaughn with SRF Consulting.
The option listed as A3 among those presented would also restrict access at 280th Avenue, the Olmsted-Dodge county line, and Olmsted County Road 3, east of Byron. The option would include interchanges at 10th Avenue in Byron and 270th Avenue/Dodge County Road 15. The current intersection at Second Avenue/Olmsted County Road 5 in Byron would be replaced by an overpass but with no direct access to Highway 14.
Option A4 would have an overpass at County Road 3 east of Byron, interchanges at 10th Avenue and 280th Avenue, and restricted access at Second Avenue in Byron and 270th Avenue in Dodge County.
Options B1 and B2 would both include interchanges at 270th Avenue in Dodge County and Second Street in Byron then restricted access at 280th Avenue (the county line) and 10th Avenue in Byron. The difference between the two is that B1 would include a fourth interchange to be constructed at Olmsted County Road 3, whereas B2 woul turn that intersection into a simple overpass.
Right now there's no funding attached to the project and the timeline is vague, Vaughn said.
"The implementation would likely take place incrementally," he said. "There likely would be some cost-share here based on the improvements necessary."
Funding would likely come primarily from MnDOT with the counties and cities kicking in based on upgrades and changes to their own roads. While there are no detailed cost estimates at this point, A4 would be the most expensive with B1 not far behind. B3 would be third most expensive and A3 would be the cheapest of the four.
The current path of Highway 14 also would not likely change, Vaughn said, except the westbound lanes through Byron might be moved to the south a bit where the median currently exists between the two directions of travel.
During a Q&A session after the presentation by SRF Consulting, one of the roughly 80 individuals who logged in to watch asked if there were any plans to close the most dangerous intersections on the road, such as county road 104 or 3 in Olmsted County. Vaughn said that is part of the process of evaluating the project.