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Groundbreaking Ceremony Kicks Off Hwy 14 Expansion, Construction Contract Awarded

OWATONNA, MN — The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) recently held a ceremonial groundbreaking east of Owatonna, Minnesota, to mark the kickoff of the Hwy 14 expansion project between Dodge Center and Owatonna. The event marks the start of the nearly $108-million construction project.

The ceremonial first shovels of dirt for the project kicked off the project to expand 12.5 miles of Hwy 14 from two lanes to four lanes. This project will expand Hwy 14 between Owatonna and Dodge Center to complete a continuous four-lane roadway between Interstate 35 and Rochester. The project is intended to improve the capacity, safety, travel times and access to Rochester and Owatonna, as well as the I-35 corridor.

Shafer Contracting of Shafer, Minnesota, was awarded the construction contract for the Hwy 14 expansion project.

The bids were opened August 21 and were then reviewed and certified. The contract award for Shafer’s $107,997,119 bid allows the contractor’s team to begin moving ahead on the project. MnDOT is using design-build, a contracting process that brings designers and contractors together early in the detail design portion of a project. MnDOT uses the flexibility design-build offers to maximize the value received per dollar, utilize approaches and deliver projects quickly.

The first full construction season will begin in spring of 2020 and be completed by 2022.

The 2018 Corridors of Commerce project selection, which was based on specific scoring, included Hwy 14 among six other projects. Hwy 14 previously received funding through Corridors of Commerce in 2013-2015, which provided funding for right of way acquisition along with a portion of the four-lane expansion from Hwy 218 to Steele County Road 43.
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