Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News releases

Oct. 22, 2021

Latest news releases

US 71 Sanborn bridge project nearly complete; detour lifted by end of day

WILLMAR, Minn. — The U.S. Highway 71 Sanborn bridge project is nearly complete, and the detour is scheduled to be lifted by the end of today. Remaining work will be performed under traffic. Drivers are asked to use caution through the work zone while crews complete striping operations, rumble strips, and erosion control into next week.

The project included replacement of a 90-year-old bridge over the Cottonwood River south of Sanborn on US 71. The new bridge is wider with 12-foot driving lanes and 10-foot shoulders. Minor work took place on the approaches to improve drainage on the bridge, including reshaping the ditches and stream stabilization. New guardrail was installed and two wide, gravel passageways were added under each end of the bridge to encourage animals to traverse below the bridge, along the riverbank.

Additional information

Benefits of the project include a wider bridge with improved drainage and enhanced safety. The cost of the project was $3.6 million, and Robert R. Schroeder Construction Co. was the prime contractor.

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Work zone travel

MnDOT advises travelers to always slow down when approaching every work zone, then navigate through with care and caution. Other reminders: 

  • Never enter a roadway that has been blocked with barriers or cones
  • Stay alert; work zones constantly change
  • Watch for workers and slow-moving equipment
  • Obey posted speed limits; fine for a work zone violation is $300
  • Minimize distractions behind the wheel
  • Be patient; expect delays, especially during peak travel times 

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