A classic car that's also from 1931 will be the last one across.
The locals have been waiting a long time for this.
The Stillwater Lift Bridge is nearly ready for retirement.
Minnesota and Wisconsin selected an architect who plans a St. Croix River bridge with a design that will minimize its impact on the environment. The first design of its type in the U.S. is under construction now, although it's widely used in Europe and Japan. The shorter towers of the "extradosed" bridge will keep it below the bluff line.
Gov. Mark Dayton and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker held a joint celebration Friday afternoon near the 81-year-old Stillwater Lift Bridge. It comes after President Obama signed the bill to exempt the new crossing from the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Construction on the $675 million four-lane bridge is likely to begin in early 2014 and take three years to complete.
They may come from opposing political philosophies, but Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker are speaking with one voice on the St. Croix River bridge project. The two governors sent a letter to President Barack Obama urging him to quickly sign legislation that clears the way for bridge.
U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann were among those in Stillwater at the Saturday morning event. After decades of debate, lawmakers voted Thursday to exempt the proposed St. Croix River crossing from the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. President Obama is expected to support it. The new four-lane bridge will replace the 80-year-old Stillwater Lift Bridge.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Rep. Michele Bachmann will be among the people in Stillwater this weekend for the event. The U.S. House and Senate sent legislation to President Obama exempting the $700 million dollar project from the the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.
Supporters of a new bridge near Stillwater have been pushing the concept for decades. They believe they can finally reach their goal if the House votes to exempt part of the St. Croix from its status as a Wild and Scenic River. But the bridge has its critics. They're using financial arguments in hopes of rallying opposition.
The Senate has already approved a new St. Croix River bridge near Stillwater and now the House has put the issue on its calendar for this week. Congresswoman Michele Bachmann says she's confident the bride will be approved. It will need two-thirds of the votes cast to pass.
Federal environmental approval for the the new St. Croix River bridge will have to wait until next year. Lawmakers adjourned for the holidays without taking any congressional action. Eight U.S. House members from Minnesota and Wisconsin are urging their colleagues to make the project a priority. The $690 million, four-lane bridge would replace the current 80-year-old Stillwater Lift Bridge between Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Democrat Reps. Betty McCollum and Keith Ellison have introduced a bill to cap any bridge project using federal funds at just under $600 million. The proposed bridge currently has a $700 million price tag.