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--- Quote from: froggie on August 30, 2023, 09:29:11 AM ---4-laning there was about 30 years before the advent of the NHS system (which was in 1995).

I highly doubt an overpass or flyover was considered here.  First, the only county in Minnesota that ever bothered to design (let alone build) county-route freeways was Hennepin.  Second, this area was nothing but fields and trees until well into the 1970s.

Speculating here, but I feel there are two possible reasons for the wider median:  either a higher design speed on the westbound lanes (which would require a more gradual curve than existed originally), or something to do with drainage, as the area occupied by the strip mall, liquor store, and Giuseppe's was a wetland at the time of 4-lane construction.

It's also worth noting that a ca. 1964 (around or shortly before time of construction) thoroughfare plan for the Twin Cities did not envision CSAH 42 as a freeway or even an expressway.

--- End quote ---

The drainage theory makes sense to me. I used to work a 1/2 mile west of there on 42, and the median does have some depth to it, and I believe the westbound lanes are elevated a couple feet higher than eastbound.

Drainage was also my sneaking suspicion. The only reason I didn't just assume that and move on was because I don't recall special design treatments for water control being too common of an occurrence. Drainage design goes hand-in-hand with road engineering, of course, but normally roads are kept free of bulb-outs, unusual geometry, etc. because the drainage is designed around the ideal roadway geometry. I guess this is just one of those cases where they had to compromise slightly.

edit: I thought about the design speed as well. I dismissed this though because it seemed like the road quickly lost any sense of "high speed design" immediately to the east (of County Road 11), where it loses its median completely. Seemed odd to me they'd go to such great lengths to have a high speed curve, just to have the road narrow down on one end. But then, for all I know they always planned to have the divided highway continue east of County Road 11...funny, that never did happen.

Thanks for the replies!

Prep work for a three-year project to replace or rehabilitate several bridges on I-00 in Austin began Tuesday, partly funded from an INFRA grant. The 4th St NW interchange is concurrently planned to be replaced with a SPUI.

MnDOT posted on Facebook that the TH 301 project outside St. Cloud will end Friday, which also means the end of 301 as it will be turned over to the city of St. Cloud.

Edina finally completed their triple roundabout project on Eden Avenue. The "double roundabout" directly on the east side of TH 100 next to the former Perkins site might be the first in Minnesota that I can think of where two are directly connected with each other like a pair of glasses.


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