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Chamber seeks volunteers to plan for summer disruption from Highway 61 reconstruction

Jan 05, 2021 10:36AM ● By Editor
From Jim Boyd, Executive Director of the Cook County Chamber of Commerce - January 5, 2021

Starting in May, MnDOT will begin phase 2 of its Highway 61 reconstruction. The project will run until sometime in October. It primarily will affect two segments of Highway 61 in Grand Marais:

1. From Eighth Avenue West (where you turn into the rec park) to Third Avenue West/Wisconsin Street will be under reconstruction from May to October. One lane of traffic east bound will be maintained at all times.

2. From Third Avenue West/Wisconsin Street to Broadway Avenue, Highway 61 will be completely closed to traffic from May until August. Eastbound traffic will flow onto Wisconsin Street to detour around the closure.

I have attached two drawings that illustrate the projects.


Beginning soon, we wish to develop a group of business leaders who can help us think about the challenges presented this summer by this project and prepare as best we can to ensure they add as little travail as possible to a business community already struggling from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. We intend that this group will be in regular contact with MnDOT and the City of Grand Marais to discuss any issues that arise. 

I am seeking names of folks who would like to be members of this informal Highway 61 Business Committee. Membership will entail meeting every two weeks, possibly more often at times, via Zoom to take up the issues that present themselves with this highway project.

If you are interested in being part of this committee, please email me. Already signed up for membership on the committee are Mary Somnis of the EDA, Linda Jurek of VCC, Jim Joynes, Greg Wright of North House, Matthew Brown of WTIP, Andrea Orest of the clinic and Eric Humphrey of the Trading Post. I would like to hear back soon, as we wish to schedule a first meeting for Jan. 19 or Jan. 20. 

Jim Boyd
Executive Director
Cook County Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Box 805 
Grand Marais, MN 55604
218-370-9665 (office/cell)
218-387-2466 (home)
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