Hwy. 212 construction funded from Cologne to NYA

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By Amy Felegy
SW Newsmedia
Hwy. 212 construction funded from Cologne to NYA

Posted: July 7, 2021
Read this story on SW News Media’s website

Julia Coleman holding a new bill to improve Highway 212 beside the highway section it impacts

The second phase of the Highway 212 construction project, between Norwood Young America and Cologne, was recently awarded $25 million in state funding.

The funds were allotted for major improvements to a five-mile section of the road. It was included in a transportation bill passed by the state House and Senate, and signed by Gov. Tim Walz last week, said Sen. Julia Coleman (R-Chanhassen).

The $25 million fills a funding gap for “Phase 2” of the larger Highway 212 improvement project. Phase 1 of the project, between Cologne and Carver, began this spring.

Improvements will include an expansion from a two-lane highway to four lanes — the last Highway 212 segment in Carver County to do so. The portion hasn’t been reconstructed or widened since it was built over 90 years ago.

Construction will also add turn lanes and expand shoulders for increased safety on a road known for its accidents. At least four people have died on Highway 212 between Cologne and Norwood Young America over the past 11 years. It also has plenty of trucks and increasing traffic from across the region.

The total cost for the segment is expected to be around $60 million, said Carver County Engineer Lyndon Colebrook-Robjent.

“This is a project that’s been dreamed about and planned for many years,” said Rep. Greg Boe, R-Chaska. “It’s something that we need … I’ve really only heard a couple people talking negatively (about it) and it’s only because of the temporary mess that construction brings.”

For Sen. Coleman and many others, that construction is worth it.

“It’s time for this to happen. We’re just thrilled it’s finally gotten across the finish line,” Coleman said. “I’m actually excited to see those orange cones come up.”

Construction is slated to begin in 2024, Colebrook-Robjent said.