One of the more-popular rest stops in the area is about to see some improvements.  The Minnesota Department of Transportation is alerting the general public that work on the I-35/Thompson Hill Rest Area will begin on Monday, June 21.  The largest impact will be on truck traffic - which will be unable to access the lot during the construction project.

The main scope of the refurbishment project includes many improvements.  Work crews with the Minnesota Department of Transportation will resurface the rest area roadway and parking lots, regrade the truck parking lot to better accommodate truck parking (hence, the reason for the rest area being closed to truck traffic for the time being), and replace all sidewalks and trails to improve accessibility to and from the Visitor Center. Total cost for the project is around $3.5 million.

While the rest area will be closed to truck traffic, it will remain open to the general public and regular-sized vehicles.  MNDOT is staging the work so that pedestrians and regular-passenger vehicles can access rest area facilities.  The Minnesota Department of Transportation hasn't released an expected timeline for completion of the work, but due to the scope it's probably safe to assume it will consume a good portion of the summer. The project page for the I-35/Thompson Hill Rest Area work suggests that the work will be wrapped up sometime in October.

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As with any summer road work, the Minnesota Department of Transportation reminds drivers to use caution in the work zone; when entering the rest area, look for signage for access and open parking spaces.  

Here are a few general reminders regarding work zone safety etiquette:

  • Slow down
  • Use care and caution
  • Stay alert
  • Watch for changing conditions
  • Stay alert for workers and slow moving equipment
  • Obey posted speed limits; work zone fines are $300
  • Minimize distractions
  • Be patient
  • Expect delays

For more details about the specific work being done at the I-35/Thompson Hill rest area or any of the work coordinated by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, click here to visit their online portal.

Herbs That Grow Best In The Northland

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Keep scrolling for 50 vintage photos that show the beauty of America's national parks.


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