« U student charged with misdemeanor after being fired from KSTP | Main | Man shot while hunting »

I-94 traffic jams have people demanding more lanes

Traffic jams on I-94 between Rogers and Monticello ignite demand for more lanes, and a coalition says the backups hurt businesses, the Star Tribune reported.

Rep. Jim Oberstar, D-Minn., chairman of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, learned firsthand what people have been saying for years: I-94 traffic jams are a major problem.

"We don't have anything [else] slowing us down -- just the traffic," said Kathleen Poate, president of the I-94 West Chamber of Commerce. "On any given [day] the freeway is just bumper-to-bumper."

To improve the Interstate by adding more lanes, Poate and the chamber are looking to get hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid.

The group created an I-94 West Corridor Coalition to push for the funding to widen the highway between Rogers and Monticello.

The coalition wants an extra lane in both directions from Hwy. 101 near Rogers to Monticello.

The estimate of turning the 14-mile stretch into a six lanes on both sides, and doing bridge repairs along the way, would cost about $200 million.

Also proposed is adding lanes in both directions from Hwy. 101 southeasy to I-494, which would cost an estimated $254 million.