Hwy 23 South Gap detour will be lifted today
WILLMAR, Minn. – The main detour for the Hwy 23 South Gap project will be lifted by the end of today, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation. When the detour is removed, Hwy 23 will open to traffic from Hawick to Paynesville.
Construction remains ongoing from New London to Paynesville under traffic. However, work on the project’s first year is winding down and the project will be suspended within the next few weeks until spring 2023 when the second year of construction will get underway.
Highway 23 expansion projects
The South Gap project expands seven miles of Hwy 23 to four lanes, from New London to Paynesville. Safety will be enhanced at intersections along the corridor and a pedestrian underpass will be constructed near Hawick. The two-year project will conclude in 2024.
The South Gap project is part of the three-year Hwy 23 Gaps expansion project which received funding through the Corridors of Commerce program in May 2018. In addition to the South Gap, the North Gap expansion of Hwy 23 to four lanes from Paynesville to Richmond is scheduled for completion this year. When the North Gap and South Gap sections are both complete, Hwy 23 travelers will be able to experience continuous four-lane travel from Willmar to Foley.
Project benefits and cost
Benefits of the project include improved traffic flow and freight movement, as well as overall corridor performance, capacity, and safety. Mathiowetz Construction is the contractor for the South Gap project, and the cost is $34.5 million.
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