Bridge replacement plan sparks opposition

| 8/14/2007

There’s a difference of opinion in Minnesota over how quickly a new bridge should be built to replace the Interstate 35 span that collapsed.

The Minnesota DOT said it wants to fast-track construction and have the new bridge in place by the end of next year.

But according to media reports, state Sen. Steve Murphy, D-Red Wing, is accusing the state’s DOT of “rushing headlong” into the project in a way that could compromise safety.

Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak said fast-tracking the project could mean missing a chance to route traffic more smoothly to the city’s downtown area.

The bridge that collapsed had four lanes in each direction. The state DOT is proposing putting five lanes in each direction on the new bridge.