Highway 23 Initiative
Jason Duininck, Business Development for Duininck, has been part of a coalition since 1985, lobbying for funding to expand Highway 23’s two-lane infrastructure to four-lane from the Willmar to St. Cloud, Minnesota area.
West Central Minnesota, the only regional center in the state without four-lane access, has been waiting for this expansion for nearly 60 years when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway act in 1956. A total of 64 businesses and 25 private people participated in the most recent stint of lobbying, including Jason who chaired the legislative group.
The last two remaining stretches of the two-lane highway (15 miles total) were successfully approved for funding in May of 2018 through a $105MM bond. “The Coalition is pleased with this announcement,” Jason stated. “This is great news for the 1,100+ transportation-related businesses along this critical corridor connecting Greater Minnesota from Duluth to Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
The 90 members of the Coalition have dedicated many resources, time and effort to move this project forward. We are happy that Governor Dayton and the Minnesota Legislature recognized the need, supported this project and provided MnDOT with the direction and the means to complete it.”
The construction of the final 15-mile stretch will begin in 2022-2023 and will be a major step forward for West Central Minnesota. “What we’ve learned through this process over the years is that we need to keep telling our stories to government each year. The effort has been successful due to many people over the years,” Jason shared.