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Transportation Commissioner Listens To Concerns Of St. Cloud Area Residents [AUDIO]

Traffic Backed-Up on Highway 10 from Royalton Fire - Friday, August 9, 2013
Sara Lahr

ST. CLOUD – Getting from point A to point B more efficiently.  That was the topic of a Town Hall meeting today (Wednesday) in St. Cloud hosted by the State Transportation Commissioner Charlie Zelle.

Local officials want a wider Interstate 94 between St. Cloud and the Twin Cities, the Northstar Commuter Rail extended to St. Cloud, and more regular flights out of the St. Cloud Regional Airport.  However, Zelle says the St. Cloud metro area isn’t the only region with a wish list.

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Zelle says there are more worthy projects than there is money to go around.  He says the state has a $12 billion funding gap during the next 20 years.

Besides new projects, the state’s infrastructure is aging, 50 percent of the state highway pavements are more than 50 years old, and 35 percent of the state bridges are over 50 years old.

The solution, look for the State Legislature to talk a lot about raising more revenue for transportation projects during the 2014 session.

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Zelle says 49 percent of the state transportation department’s revenue comes from the state fuel tax and the motor vehicle tax.

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