MnDOT District 2 partnerships
Northwest Minnesota Area Transportation Partnership
MnDOT created Area Transportation Partnerships (ATPs) more than two decades ago in response to changes in federal law that increased state flexibility and the need for public involvement in transportation planning and program decision-making. ATPs were established by each district specifically to facilitate broader input to the federal project selection process for the development of the State Transportation Improvement Program, the four-year program of state and local projects with federal highway and transit funding, projects with state funding.
The Northwest Minnesota Area Transportation Partnership has been organized along MnDOT District 2 boundary and includes all the counties in the district. In addition to MnDOT District 2 staff, representatives from cities, counties, tribal governments, transit, industry, Regional Development Commissions and the Grand Forks/East Grand Forks Metropolitan Planning Organizations are included in the ATP. Through the ATP, these organizations are responsible for reviewing the district’s proposed four construction program and recommend local transportation priorities for federal funding.
All the lands of the Red Lake Nation and portions of the Leech Lake and White Earth reservations lie within the boundaries of District 2. MnDOT consults with the tribes annually to discuss transportation issues and project. A member from the tribes also sits on the ATP.
Grand Forks/East Grand Forks Metropolitan Planning Organization
The Grand Forks/East Grand Forks Metropolitan Planning Organization is the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the planning area encompasses the cities of Grand Forks, ND and East Grand Forks, MN as well as the urbanized areas in Grand Forks County, ND and Polk County, MN. MPO’s lead the development of metropolitan area transportation plans and as coordinate the transportation planning process. All urban areas with populations greater than 50,000 are required to have an MPO if the agencies spend federal funds on transportation improvements.
Regional development organizations
There are nine regional development commissions established by Minnesota statute in 1969 to provide technical assistance to local units of government in their region. They perform a variety of unique services based on the needs of their region and partner with numerous state and federal agencies. District 2 is served by the Region 1 Northwest Regional Development Commission and the Region 2 Headwaters Regional Development Commission.
Toward Zero Deaths
Toward Zero Deaths is a multi-agency partnership led by the Minnesota Departments of Transportation, Public Safety and Health in cooperation with the FHWA, Minnesota county engineers, the Center for Transportation Studies, and other traffic safety organizations. The Northwestern Minnesota Toward Zero Deaths program began in 2008 and includes all the counties in District 2.
District 2 is bordered by Canada to the north which requires a collaborative effort by all agencies to provide a cohesive and connected transportation system across borders. Between Minnesota and Canada, there are six border crossings.
In cooperation with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, District 2 is currently undertaking the replacement of the Baudette/Rainy River International Bridge on Minnesota Highway 72 in the City of Baudette and Highway 11 in the Town of Rainy River. Since the bridge is jointly owned, decisions regarding the needs of this bridge are made by both MnDOT and MTO abiding by all applicable regulatory processes of both countries.