Report: Minnesota ranks 25th in highway performanceby Tom Robertson, Minnesota Public Radio
Bemidji, Minn. — Minnesota fell 10 spots and now ranks 25th in the nation in state highway performance, according to a report from the Reason Foundation, a Los Angeles based think tank.
The ranking is based on data from 2008, the most recent year with complete data.
The report shows Minnesota's ranking was hurt by placing 45th in rural interstate highway condition and 49th in urban interstate congestion.
MnDOT spokesman Kevin Gutknecht said they have made dramatic improvements in urban road congestion since the data was collected in 2008.
"In 2008, the I-35W corridor through Minneapolis was closed because in 2007 a bridge had collapsed and we were constructing a new bridge," Gutknecht said. "So that had a significant impact on traffic and traffic congestion in the metropolitan area."
Gutknecht said MnDOT has been putting more money into infrastructure as well.
"In 2008, we had a construction program that about $600 million, and in 2009 the program was about $900 million, and it was $1.2 billion in 2010," he said.
The report also shows Minnesota had the second-lowest fatality rate in the country, and ranked third in the condition of its bridges.