Midway Road (County State Aid Highway 13) in Midway Township and the City of Hermantown carries approximately 6,900 vehicles per day. The road also has two railroad crossings, which each carry approximately 30 trains per day. St. Louis County Public Works engineers have identified several issues at these crossings, including traffic delays and congestion, rear end crashes at the back of lines waiting for a train, and risk of crashes involving trains at the railroad crossings.
St. Louis County Public Works is seeking community input to determine whether improvements are wanted at these two railroad crossings. County engineers will host a public meeting to gather input for an exploration study they will be conducting. The meeting will be Monday, May 8, at 6 p.m. at Hermantown City Hall, 5105 Maple Grove Rd, Hermantown. The meeting will include voting exercises and other interactive activities to gather this input.
Currently, there are no plans for any major improvements at these railroad crossings, nor has funding been established for a project. The purpose of an exploration study is to gather input from stakeholder groups, including the general public, businesses located on and near Midway Road, the trucking industry, and local agency representatives from the City of Hermantown, Midway Township, Minnesota Department of Transportation, CN Railroad, the Duluth Superior Metropolitan Interstate Council and St. Louis County.
The outcome of this Exploration Study will determine if St. Louis County should proceed into a planning and preliminary engineering process to recommend solutions for either or both railroad crossings. A planning and preliminary engineering process would develop a list of improvement alternatives, preliminary construction cost estimates, and determine the benefits and impacts of each alternative on traffic, businesses, pedestrians and bicyclists, real estate and environment. This information would then be used to complete a benefit-cost analysis to determine which alternative may provide the greatest benefit for the cost of the project. This planning process would include a robust public engagement process like the Exploration Study to help inform the decision of the preferred improvement alternative.
More information about the study, including the online survey for anyone unable to attend the meeting, can be found at the study website at stlouiscountymn.gov/midway-rd-rr-crossings. The website also includes a comment map where people can post comments specific to a location on the map. The survey and comment map are open for public input until June 30, 2023.