Construction on Highway 21 began on Monday, and as every day passes this week more equipment and concrete culverts are arriving along the two-lane highway that connects Faribault to those living in western Rice County, and those in LeSueur County. Construction on 21 is expected to wrap up by this June.

Those traveling along Highway 21, whether getting to and from work in Faribault or trying to get out to the lakes area to the west are going to be greeted with some slowdowns and lane closures are the project moves along. Part of the project that you will see the most right now is the boat launch area off of 21 for Lake Mazaska. Right now that is all torn up and inaccessible.

There are also lane closures in and around the Sheildsville area along 21 while construction crews prepare for culvert repair and replacement along.

According to MnDOT's website for the project the timeline for everything to be wrapped up in June, if the weather cooperates. "The project will resurface approximately 8 miles of Hwy 21 from about 1 mile west of I-35 to Hwy 99 in Rice County. New turn lanes/ bypass lanes will be installed at Shields Court, Mazaska Lake Trail, Lake Mazaska Boat Launch, and French Lake Trail. Additionally, the Rice County Road 62 (Halstad Avenue) intersection will be improved and overhead lighting will be added for safety. Culverts will also be repaired."

The total cost of the resurfacing and culvert work will be $2.4 million dollars.

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