- Kevin Gutknecht
Office of Communications
395 John Ireland Blvd
Mail Stop 150
St. Paul, MN 55155-1899
MnDOT statement regarding U.S. flags on Hwy 610 and Hwy 10 bridges
ST. PAUL – The Minnesota Department of Transportation will install U.S. flags on a number of bridges along Highway 610 and Hwy 10 in the northwest Twin Cities metro area on Friday, July 20, according to Transportation Commissioner Tom Sorel.
“Recently, MnDOT required a private organization to remove U.S. flags that had been illegally placed on several bridges in the Twin Cities area. By law, MnDOT must remove any type of device, advertisement or obstruction placed by private organizations that could interfere with traffic. However, this removal of the flags triggered numerous complaints from the public, most suggesting that the U.S. flag deserves special consideration from state law.
“In response to public concern, we took a closer look at this issue and concluded that, if MnDOT, not a private organization, purchases and installs the flags, the agency will continue to meet its safety and legal concerns, while being sensitive to public sentiment. In addition, MnDOT’s installation will ensure that the flags are secure and that anything that comes loose would land away from the roadway. MnDOT is not willing to accept risk regarding roadway distraction or obstruction.”
The U.S. flag will be installed on 11 bridges along Hwy 610, Hwy 10 and Hwy 252, according to MnDOT. The agency is seeking input from other state DOT’s and developing a policy to determine when and where other flags may be installed.