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Public invited to attend Highway 33 open house

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Residents are invited to attend an open house from 7-8:30 p.m. Thursday, May 8, to learn more about the Highway 33 pavement replacement and intersection improvement project scheduled to begin next month on Highway 33 from Interstate 35 to the intersection with Big Lake Road and Doddridge Avenue in Cloquet.

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The open house will be held at Cloquet City Hall, 1307 Cloquet Avenue. Minnesota Department of Transportation, Carlton County and city of Cloquet staff will be available to explain project details and answer questions.

While pavement all along Highway 33 will be removed and replaced, there will also be a number of changes to the way traffic flows in the area in and around the intersection with Big Lake Road and Doddridge Avenue.

According to previous plans released by MnDOT, the stretch of highway in front of the Armory will see some big changes next summer. While southbound Highway 33 vehicles will still be able to turn left into the L&M Supply/movie theater entrance, northbound traffic will have to drive to a new turn site at Armory Road to get to Pine Tree Plaza or Pine Valley recreation area.

As well, traffic exiting the Brenny-Dahl drive will only be allowed to turn right — and won’t be able to cross the highway or turn left — although vehicles could access the northbound Highway 33 lanes by doing a U-turn at Washington Avenue, according to the project page on the MnDOT website.

The main intersection at Hwy 33, Doddridge Avenue and Big Lake Road also will be reconfigured to increase capacity and speed up/change the signal cycle (especially for the east- and west-bound lanes that currently take turns crossing the intersection), there will also be substantial changes to the roadway surrounding the intersection.

There will be significant traffic interruptions on Highway 33 during the construction project, which will close one side of the highway at a time, reducing four lanes of traffic to two.

For more information, attend the open house or visit the project web page at www.dot.state.mn.us/d1/projects/hwy33cloquet. For even more information, contact Derek Fredrickson, MnDOT project manager, atderek.fredrickson@state.mn.us or 218-725-2744.

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