MAPLE GROVE, Minn. (WCCO) – Drivers in the Twin Cities metro area now have a new and safer stretch of highway to travel on.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Wednesday afternoon for the completion of the new Highway 610 extension.
“It’s been over 40 years in the planning,” said MnDOT Project Manager Dan Penn.
It connects highway 169 in Brooklyn Park to County Road 81 in Maple Grove. The stretch includes nearly three miles of four-lane freeway.
Penn said the area started as nothing but a bunch of fields, but it’s always been a corridor set for the future building of Highway 610. The goal is for it eventually to continue all the way to Interstate 94. He said they still have another 2 1/2 miles to go.
“It’s needed to definitely keep going to 94. This is a step in the right direction,” said Penn.
Construction on the project started in October of 2009.
David Jess, the acting Maple Grove Police Chief, said his unit is excited about opening up Highway 610 because it will enhance the department’s ability to serve the community and ensure safety.
“It will allow our emergency vehicles to get to places a little bit more quickly without haveing to deal with some of the traffic tie-ups,” Jess said.