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Contact: Mike DoughertyMnDOT District 6 public engagement, communicationsCell: 507-251-2749Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
RED WING, Minn. — A small ceremonial procession of veterans and emergency responders from Minnesota and Wisconsin will mark the symbolic first traffic on the new Hwy 63 Eisenhower Bridge of Valor at Red Wing on Thursday afternoon, Nov. 21, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.
The group will be led by American Legion color guards from Red Wing, Minn., and Bay City, Wis., followed by veterans in a 1971 Kaiser Jeep M35A2 cargo truck and fire and law enforcement vehicles from both Wisconsin and Minnesota. The contingent will travel the Mississippi River bridge from Wisconsin to Minnesota where the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce and mayor will hold a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony on the slip ramp near Potter Street. The procession will begin at 2 p.m.
Traffic will begin on the new bridge on Friday in stages during the day.
“Congratulations to Red Wing on the opening of the new Highway 63 Bridge,” said Minnesota Governor Tim Walz. “Bridges connect communities and commerce. This critical infrastructure project not only increases motorist safety as they commute, but also emphasizes the important economic relationship between Minnesota and Wisconsin.”
A larger community celebration is being planned in late summer of 2020 in Red Wing to mark the project completion and dedication of the new bridge.
Construction work will continue on the new bridge even after traffic begins. Work will continue into 2020 including lighting and bridge aesthetics, as well as the pedestrian and bicycle path. The contractor, Zenith Tech, Inc., of Waukesha, Wis., will begin demolition of the older structure on Monday, Nov. 25. Other work on the project in 2020 will include completion of the connecting roads on the Wisconsin side, removal of road that connected to the 1960 bridge and removal of a small temporary bridge over Hwy 61.
The $63.4 million Hwy 63 bridge construction project includes building a new bridge to replace the Hwy 63 bridge, replacing the slip ramp over Hwy 61, reconstructing approach roadways in Minnesota and Wisconsin, improving access to Red Wing and upgrading pedestrian and bicyclist crossings.
Learn more or sign up for email updates at MnDOT’s project web site or follow the Facebook project page. For real-time traffic information in Minnesota, call 511 or visit www.511mn.org.