VIRGINIA - People living in towns west of Virginia might have faced an extra $3,000 a year in commuting fees if the westerly route went through for the Highway 53 project.
Newly released research supports MnDOT’s decision to cut the westerly route on the project.
An economic impact study done this summer found the route, which would cut off traffic to Eveleth and Gilbert, would essentially kill eastern range cities like Aurora, Hoyt Lakes, and Biwabik.
“Virginia, being the main employment hub; housing and recreational opportunities on the east range would decrease," explained MnDOT Highway 53 manager Roberta Dwyer.
The final report on the survey will be published at the end of this month.
A decision on a route will be made in 2015.