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GUEST COLUMN: Help MnDOT form a vision

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opinion Brainerd, 56401
Brainerd MN 506 James St. / PO Box 974 56401

How will Minnesotans get there from here — and back — in the future?

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) and its partners want your help in answering that question. In March, MnDOT launched Minnesota GO, a new initiative to develop a long-range vision for transportation in the state. 

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Local residents can add their thoughts about the future of transportation by attending a public workshop in our area. The interactive workshop is scheduled for Monday, May 16 at St. Cloud State University in the Atwood Center, beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Minnesota is competing to remain a viable economic center, and we at the Minnesota Department of Transportation are working hard to do our part by being good stewards of taxpayer dollars, being forward thinking and listening to the people of Minnesota. Minnesota GO will provide guidance about overall priorities and expectations, building a common understanding of future transportation priorities. But to make the most of this effort, we need to hear from you.

We are looking for diverse participation and are encouraging Minnesotans to think broadly about future transportation needs. This work will help in making decisions now and for future generations.

After the public hearings throughout the state are completed, the 31-member Minnesota GO Steering Committee will review feedback and related research and then draft and recommend a vision statement and set of objectives. A public hearing on the proposed vision will follow in July.

Mn/DOT and other transportation organizations will use the vision and information from this project in developing short-term and long-term plans. Mn/DOT will use the vision as it updates the statewide multimodal transportation plan later this year and as it updates other investments and plans for highways, rail, transit, airports, and trails. 

In addition to the public workshops, Minnesotans can join the discussion through the Minnesota GO website at www.minnesotago.org. Hosted by the Citizens League, the site includes information about the project and activities that are designed to help Minnesotans as they consider the future. Teenagers are also invited to join the visioning effort at www.studentsspeakout.org. 

Please consider participating in our area's public workshop. It will offer you an opportunity to talk in small groups with other community members and share your thoughts about where the future of transportation should go in the state.

BOB BUSCH is the district transportation engineer for MnDOT District 3. 

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