The County Road 75 bridge over the Sauk River in St. Cloud near Woods Farmer Seed & Nursery and Fleet Farm is closed and will be until late May/early June.  Stearns County Commissioner Joe Perske joined me on WJON.  He went into detail as to why this needed to be done as soon as possible.  Perske says there is dangling rebar and concrete underneath the bridge which was built in the 1950s.  He says both he and Congressman Tom Emmer got a look under the bridge which convinced them that this bridge needs to be replaced.

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Perske explained the types of vehicles used on roads in the 1950s is completely different than the types of large vehicles that are used today.  This bridge just isn't equipped to handle the weight it needs to.  Perske says the bridge is listed as a "deficient bridge".  The project will cost an estimated $3 Million dollars with $1 Million coming from the Federal government congressional spending.  Drivers who would normally cross this bridge can follow the detour signs but Perske also suggested some other options both north and south of County Road 75 as options.

Highway 23 between Richmond and Paynesville is open to the public and Perske says he is happy this 2-year project is complete.  He says work on Highway 23 isn't done yet as the plan is to have 4 lanes of traffic from Willmar to Foley.  The stretch between Paynesville and New London is slated for road construction in 2024.

If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Joe Perske it is available below.



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