Listening session scheduled for public input on Hwy 7 intersection safety

Jessica Stölen-Jacobson
Montevideo American-News

Mailers were sent to community members in Montevideo this week about an upcoming listening session hosted by the Minnesota Department of Transportation. The listening session is being held to discuss community concerns about the intersection of Highway 7 and County Road 15/24th Street. The intersection is the corner on which Co-op Credit Union and Cenex are located. This particular intersection has recently been discussed as a concern to community members at recent meetings for the Trails Initiative, as there is also a walking/biking trail that ends on both sides of the highway leading to a need to cross the highway. There is currently no traffic light at the intersection. 

This meeting is being held to prepare for MnDOT’s upcoming safety study that will be conducted on the intersection. MnDOT is hoping to collect public feedback about what sort of issues that the community has observed with the intersection. “The study originated because we had been contacted by both Chippewa County and the City of Montevideo asking MnDOT to look at that intersection from a safety perspective,” says MnDOT Traffic Engineer Cody Brand. 

There is also the opportunity to fill out a study online utilizing MnDOT’s website in order to provide input. Brand says there are three areas of focus for questions on the website survey, as well as questions that will be asked at the listening session. “We’re asking for input on walking and biking across Highway 7. There’s a trail on the West side of County Road 15 that crosses Highway 7 that we are looking for input on. We’re looking for input on visibility on that intersection - the ability to see approaching traffic from either if you’re stopped at County Road 15 and waiting to cross 15 or enter onto Highway 7 if there are any visibility concerns with the traffic on Highway 7. We also have an open-ended question on the survey for any concerns about that intersection on Highway 7,” Brand says.

The meeting will be held on Thursday, November 18th from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. in CCM Wellness Center’s conference room. For those not able to attend in person, the survey can be found at mndot.gov/d8/projects/hwy7montevideo. The safety study is anticipated to be completed in January of 2022.