Table heading

Constitutional
Routes (yellow star)
CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE DESCRIPTIONS are taken from the text of the 1920 Babcock Amendment to the Minnesota Constitution, now codified at Minnesota Statutes §161.114. One note regarding route descriptions is that the legal descriptions of many east-west routes run from east to west , while consistent with standard mileposts, all route descriptions on this page go from west to east and south to north .

Constitutional Route 1







 

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Iowa, southeasterly at Albert Lea and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point in Albert Lea and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point and on the southerly limits of the city of St. Paul and then beginning at a point on the northerly limits of the city of St. Paul and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on the westerly limits of the city of Duluth and then beginning at a point on the northerly limits of the city of Duluth and thence extending in a northeasterly direction to a point on the boundary line between the state of Minnesota and the province of Ontario, affording Albert Lea, Owatonna, Faribault, Northfield, Farmington, St. Paul, White Bear, Forest Lake, Wyoming, Rush City, Pine City, Hinckley, Sandstone, Moose Lake, Carlton, Duluth, Two Harbors, Grand Marais and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 65 Iowa border to St. Paul; 61 St. Paul to Duluth and Duluth to Canadian border

1934 designations: U.S. 65 Iowa border to Farmington; U.S. 218** Farmington to MN-88 (S. Robert Trail at Dodd Road); MN-88 from 218 to St. Paul; U.S. 61 St. Paul to Canadian border

Present-day designations: U.S. 65 Iowa border to jct. I-35 N of Albert Lea; I-35* to Faribault; MN-21 I-35 to MN-3; MN-3 Faribault to MN-149; MN-149 to St. Paul.  U.S. 61 St. Paul to Wyoming; I-35* to Rush City; MN-361 and MN-70 through Rush City and returning to I-35; I-35* to Sandstone; MN-23 through SandstoneI-35*; MN-73 and MN-27 through Moose Lake;I-35*; MN-210 to Carlton; MN-45; I-35* to Duluth.  MN-61 Duluth to Canadian border.


* Interstate route that replaced original U.S. route but as a closely parallel route still meets route description.
** Became MN-218 in 1935

Comment: Like many states when first marking their roads, route 1 was one of the primary routes across the state. This was no exception, and it ran border to border.  It would have been the longest route, too. In looking at a 1933 map, it appears that just south of St. Paul, U.S. 65 was moved onto S. Robert Trail/Street, which at that time was not a trunk highway. CR-1 remained on Dodd Road. In the route changes of 1934, though, S. Robert became a trunk highway and with the U.S. route changes became U.S. 218 (until 1935) and, further north, the point of entry of new U.S. 52 from Rochester. 

No connection to post-1934 MN-1

 MN-1 

 

West terminus: ND State Line (ND-54) at Oslo
East terminus:
MN-61 near Finland
(Now, that's a pair of towns that show the origins of northern Minnesota's early settlers!)

Length: 346 Regions: NW, NE

Counties: Marshall, Pennington, Clearwater, Beltrami, Koochiching, Itasca, St. Louis, Lake

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 173, 33, 170, 166, 160

How numbered: Given the TH-1 designation because it was one of the longest trunk highways, and would allow re-use of the Rt. 1 markers removed from along U.S. 65 and 61 in 1934*.

History: Authorized 1933, except for Constitutional Route segment between U.S. 75 and MN-32 at Thief River Falls.

Improvements: As recently as 1963, significant portions were unpaved. Last unpaved segment was bypassed about 1996 by swapping for a paved county road segment east of U.S. 53.

Comments: Probably the longest state-numbered trunk highway, both now and when the routes were first laid out in 1933. (For a while, TH-23 may have been a little longer.) Passing through Cook? Check out the folksy web site at www.cookmn.com.

*This latter comment (taken from Minnesota Highway News in 1934, is at odds with the report that all renumbering was done in one day, and that the new routes were marked with white rather than yellow stars.

Constitutional Route 2

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 1 on the westerly limits of the city of Duluth and thence extending in a southwesterly direction along said Route No. 1 to a point on said route at Carlton and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on the east bank of the Red River of the North at Moorhead, affording Duluth, Carlton, McGregor, Aitkin, Brainerd, Motley, Staples, Wadena, Detroit, Moorhead and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 10 and 10N North Dakota border to Motley; 210 Motley to Carlton; 61 Carlton to Duluth (this segment concurrent with CR-1)

1934 designations: U.S. 10 North Dakota border to Motley; U.S. 210 Motley to Carlton; U.S. 61 Carlton to Duluth

Present-day designations: U.S. 10 North Dakota border to Motley; MN-210 Motley to Carlton; MN-45 Carlton to I-35; I-35* to Duluth

*Interstate route that replaced original U.S. route but as a closely parallel route still meets route description.

Comment: Probably one of the major three east-west routes across Minnesota, thus the very low number.

No connection to U.S. 2

U.S. 2

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

   

West terminus: ND State Line (U.S. 2) at East Grand Forks
Nationally ---
I-5 at Everett WA
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 2) at Duluth
Nationally ---
I-75 at St. Ignace MI [western segment of U.S. 2]

Length (MN): 262 Regions: NW, NE

Counties: Polk, Clearwater, Beltrami, Hubbard, Cass, Itasca, Aitkin, St. Louis

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 8, 203

How numbered: U.S. route

NHS: Entire length in Minnesota

History: One of the original U.S. routes. All of route is Constitutional Route except between the junction with MN-194 and the Wisconsin border, authorized 1933. Original eastern part of route ran due east from Floodwood to Constitutional Route 11 (now U.S. 53), north of current path of U.S. 2 and MN-194.

Improvements: Fully paved before 1940. A few short divided segments were constructed west of Bemidji during the 1960s. Now, from Cass Lake west, this route is generally built to expressway standards and posted 65 mph. From Cass Lake to Duluth, there are only a couple of divided segments, but the non-urban portions of this segment are posted 60 mph.

Future Improvements: A new interchange with MN-89 is planned for 2012.

Comments: U.S. 2 is a major non-interstate route from Washington to Michigan. The route number is repeated in a non-connected segment from U.S. 11 near the Canadian border in New York to the Canadian Border in Maine. It is essentially unchanged from its original routing east of Idaho except for decommissioning of the portion that followed present-day I-75 from St. Ignace to Sault Ste. Marie, MI.

U.S. 2 Business (E. Grand Forks)

 

 

 

 

West terminus: ND State Line (U.S. 2 Business) at Grand Forks/E Grand Forks
East terminus
: U.S. 2 E of East Grand Forks

Length: 3 Region: NW County: Polk

Legislative Route(s): 307

How numbered: Business route

History: Originally part of then redesignated

Authorized around 1955, Grand Forks bypass (U.S. 2) was constructed around 1968. When the U.S. 2 bypass was first completed in the late 1960s, this route was originally designated MN-202.

Improvements: The bypass to Grand Forks was the main improvement, this being the original route through town.

Comments: Business route and old U.S. 2 through East Grand Forks; one of only two trunk highways exclusively designated as a business route (the other being Business MN-371). Marked with a standard U.S. 2 marker and a "BUSINESS" banner on top. Included on the District's potential future turnback list.

Constitutional Route 3































Original MN-3

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Wisconsin, westerly of La Crosse, Wisconsin, and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on the easterly limits of the city of St. Paul and then beginning at a point on the westerly limits of the city of Minneapolis and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on the east bank of the Red River of the North at Breckenridge, affording La Crescent, Winona, Kellogg, Wabasha, Lake City, Red Wing, Hastings, St. Paul, Minneapolis, Osseo, Champlin, Anoka, Elk River, Big Lake, St. Cloud, Albany, Sauk Centre, Alexandria, Elbow Lake, Fergus Falls, Breckenridge and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.


1927-33 U.S. Highways: 10S and 10 Fergus Falls to Minneapolis except for segment between just SE of Fergus Falls through Elbow Lake to Evansville (U.S. 10S followed a direct route not on a trunk highway between these points); 61 St. Paul to Wisconsin border at La Crescent.

1934 designations: MN-3 North Dakota border at Breckenridge to Fergus Falls; U.S. 52 Fergus Falls SE a few miles; MN-73** south to Elbow Lake; MN-79 to Evansville; U.S. 52 to Minneapolis; U.S. 61 St. Paul to La Crescent

Present-day designations: MN-210 North Dakota border at Breckenridge to Fergus Falls; I-94* Fergus Falls to U.S. 59 south; U.S. 59 I-94 to Elbow Lake; MN-79 east to I-94; I-94*  to St. Cloud ; MN-23 through St. Cloud; U.S. 10 to Anoka; U.S. 169 south to Osseo; [formerly followed U.S. 169 and MN-81 to Minneapolis; now routed over U.S. 169 south to I-394 and I-394 east to Minneapolis***]. U.S. 61 St. Paul south to Wisconsin border at La Crescent.

Historic Photo: Andrew Munsch (www.deadpioneer.com) sent me a photo (opens in separate window) showing two men standing by a U.S. 61/MN-3 sign. Note the height of the sign compared to what is typical today. Could be anywhere in the time fame 1927-33.

* Interstate route that replaced original U.S. route but as a closely parallel route still meets route description.
** Became U.S. 59 in 1935
*** Deviation from original routing due to route turnbacks, but generally meets route description
Post-1934 History:

West terminus
: ND State Line (ND-13) at Breckenridge
East terminus
: U.S. 10at Staples

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 3, 36, 183

How numbered: Part of route (Breckenridge to Fergus Falls) was Constitutional Route 3; remainder numbered for continuity

History: Now designated

In 1934 renumbering, Trunk Highway 3 designation was extended east from Fergus Falls over former Constitutional Route 36 and new Legislative Route 183 to U.S. 10. Redesignated by mid-1950s as MN-210.

MN-3 South terminus: MN-21 at Faribault
Previously --- U.S. 14 at Owatonna (1963-65),
MN-60 at Faribault (1965-68)
North terminus
:
I-494 (exit 67) at Inver Grove Heights
Previously --- U.S. 212 (1963-72) and
I-94 exit 243A (1972-94)

Length: 43 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Rice, Dakota

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 1, 115, 334

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Original route of U.S. 65 from Faribault to "Wescott" (today's junction TH-3 and 149 in Eagan) 1927-34. (65 then extended to St. Paul along today's 149). Also U.S. 65 south of Farmington until 1957.

In addition to U.S. 65, was designated

1934-35

1935-63

Constitutional Route between Faribault and junction MN-149; part of original (1926) U.S. 65 south of this junction. Changed to U.S. 218 in 1934 and MN-218 in 1935, and as such originally ran duplexed with U.S. 65 from Owatonna and as an independent route north from Farmington. Around 1957, U.S. 65 was rerouted onto L.R. 101 between Faribault and Lakeville. By 1958, a new alignment of U.S. 65 west of Faribault replaced the previous alignment of U.S. 65. I-35 was completed in the Owatonna to Faribault segment around this time but MN-218 was maintained as a trunk highway parallel to the freeway until around 1965. The entire route was renumbered MN-3 in 1963. North of I-494, MN-3 was routed from Robert Street onto the newly constructed Lafayette Freeway in the late 1970s. When the Lafayette Freeway was completed between I-494 and U.S. 52, the entire stretch of freeway was redesignated U.S. 52 and MN-3 was terminated at I-494.

Improvements: Paved as early as 1929. Short divided portion near Northfield but no expressway segments at this time.

Comments: Currently, there is no sign indicating the short connection to MN-3 from I-35 via MN-21.

Constitutional Route 4




 

 







 


MN-4

 

 

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Iowa, southwesterly of Jackson and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on Route No. 3, southeasterly of Sauk Centre and thence extending in a northwesterly direction along said Route No. 3 to a point on said route at Sauk Centre and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point at International Falls, affording Jackson, Windom, Sanborn, Redwood Falls, Morton, Olivia, Willmar, Paynesville, Sauk Centre, Long Prairie, Wadena, Park Rapids, Itasca State Park, Bemidji, International Falls and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 71

1934 designationsU.S. 71 Iowa border S of Jackson to New London; MN-23 New London to Paynesville; MN-4 Paynesville to U.S. 52 near Sauk Centre; U.S. 71 Sauk Centre to International Falls

Present-day designations: U.S. 71 Iowa border S of Jackson to MN-23 between Willmar and Spicer; MN-23 U.S. 71 to Paynesville; MN-4 Paynesville to I-94 near Sauk Centre; U.S. 71 Sauk Centre to International Falls.
Post-1934 History:

South terminus
: Iowa State Line
(IA-4) S of Dunnell
North terminus
:
I-94 (exit 131) near Sauk Centre

Length: 162 Regions: SW, WC

Counties: Martin, Watonwan, Brown, Renville, Meeker, Stearns, Kandiyohi

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 84, 70, 150, 4

History: Constitutional Route segments between MN-19 and U.S. 212, and between MN-55 and I-94. Other segments authorized 1933.

Improvements: Fully paved by 1961. No significant divided segments.

How numbered: Small part of route is Constitutional Route 4 (most of which is U.S. 71); remainder numbered as such for continuity

Constitutional Route 5 CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Iowa, southerly of Blue Earth and thence extending in a northeasterly direction to a point on the southerly limits of the city of Minneapolis and then beginning at a point on the northerly limits of the city of Minneapolis and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point in Swan River on Route No. 8, hereinafter described, affording Blue Earth, Winnebago, Mankato, St. Peter, Le Sueur, Jordan, Shakopee, Minneapolis, Cambridge, Mora, McGregor, Swan River and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 169 (1931)

1934 designationsU.S. 169 Iowa border S of Blue Earth to Minneapolis; U.S. 65 (1934 only, thereafter MN-65) Minneapolis to Swan River

Present-day designations: U.S. 169 Iowa border S of Blue Earth to Mankato; U.S. 14 and MN-22 to St. Peter; U.S. 169 to MN-62; [formerly followed U.S.169 and U.S. 212 to Mpls city limits; now routed along MN-62 to I-35W* (Mpls city limits)]; MN-65 Minneapolis north city limits to MN-107; MN-107 to MN-70; MN-70 west to MN-65; MN-65 north to U.S. 2 at Swan River.


*Deviation from original routing due to route turnbacks, but generally meets route description

Comment: The routing of CR-5 on the south side of the Twin Cities changed significantly between the time the route was established and the late 1920s.  Originally, the route passed through Shakopee west to east and crossed the Minnesota River at the Bloomington Ferry Bridge. It then went east on Old Shakopee Road (I bet you wondered how it got that name!) to Lyndale Avenue, where it joined CR-50 and turned north to the Minneapolis city limits. Old Shakopee Road east of this intersection was the original routing of CR-52, later moved north to 78th Street. By about 1926, CR-5 was moved onto part of CR-51 where it crossed the Minnesota River north of Shakopee and then northeast via Flying Cloud Drive and Vernon Avenue.  From that time it entered Minneapolis from Excelsior Blvd. (not exactly the "southerly limits" of Minneapolis). Somewhat ironically, reconstruction of the Bloomington Ferry Bridge and moving U.S. 169 onto this road has restored CR-5 to this Minnesota River crossing.

No connection to post-1934 MN-5

  MN-5

West terminus: MN-22 at Gaylord
East terminus
:
MN-36 at Stillwater
Previously: U.S. 61 (Kellogg Blvd. At Mounds Blvd) in St. Paul (1934-82)

Length: 85 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Sibley, Carver, Hennepin, Ramsey, Washington

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 121, 52, 111, 102, 109, 45

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

NHS: Between I-494 and MN-55

History: Easternmost segment previously designated

Constitutional Route segments between U.S. 212 and St. Paul city limits, and east of St. Paul city limits; rest authorized 1933. Section from downtown St. Paul to junction with MN-36 formerly marked MN-212 until around 1983. Original alignment at its east end in downtown St. Paul was from West 7th St. to Kellogg Blvd., then east to Mounds Blvd. (U.S. 61).

Improvements: Fully paved by 1953. West of new U.S. 212 junction in Eden Prairie, divided highway extends west to MN-41. Concurrent with freeway segments of U.S. 212 and I-494, and a short independent freeway segment between I-494 and Mississippi River, past Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Divided highway east of MN-120 in Washington County for several miles.

Comments: Concurrent with I-494 for 11 miles and with MN-19 for about 5 miles east of its western terminus. East of U.S. 212 at Norwood-Young America, this route serves as a major feeder to bedroom communities southwest of the Twin Cities. From downtown St. Paul, at one time, a freeway connection had been proposed between the junction of MN-5 (then called MN-212) with MN-120 and the junction of I-94 and U.S. 10-61, and this route’s odd alignment between I-494 and MN-120 (bypassing the former alignment along Stillwater Road) is due to this plan, now abandoned.

In the original 1934 numbering plan, this would have been MN-26 west of the junction with MN-101, and U.S. 212 from that junction east along 78th Street and St. Paul's West 7th St. to downtown St. Paul.

Constitutional Route 6 CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Iowa, southerly of Ash Creek, and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on the boundary line between the state of Minnesota and the province of Manitoba, near St. Vincent, affording Luverne, Pipestone, Lake Benton, Ivanhoe, Canby, Madison, Bellingham, Odessa, Ortonville, Graceville, Dumont, Wheaton, Breckenridge, Moorhead, Kragnes, Georgetown, Perley, Hendrum, Ada, Crookston, Warren, Donaldson, Hallock and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 75

1934 designationsU.S. 75 Iowa border S of Luverne to Canadian border at Noyes

Present-day designations: U.S. 75 Iowa border S of Luverne to MN-200 N of Moorhead; MN-200 east to Ada; MN-9 north to Crookston; U.S. 75 north to Canadian border.

No connection to post-1934 MN-6

  MN-6

South terminus: MN-18 W of Garrison (signed from the 18/U.S. 169 junction)
North terminus
: U.S. 71 at Big Falls

Length: 143 Regions: EC, NE

Counties: Crow Wing, Cass, Itasca, Koochiching

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 137, 34, 61

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Two northern segments north of MN-200 are Constitutional Route. Segment south of this point authorized 1933.

Improvements: Fully paved by 1970. No divided sections.

Constitutional Route 7

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 3 at Winona and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and South Dakota, westerly of Lake Benton, affording Winona, St. Charles, Rochester, Kasson, Dodge Center, Claremont, Owatonna, Waseca, Mankato, St. Peter, New Ulm, Springfield, Tracy, Lake Benton and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 14

1934 designationsU.S. 14, MN-99 (route as defined, not as originally marked), U.S. 14.

Present-day designations: U.S. 14, MN-99, U.S. 14.


Comment: This was one of the only two Constitutional Routes where there was a discrepancy between the description and the route as marked. Between Nicollet and Mankato, the direct route was marked as MN-7 and later U.S. 14. This segment became a trunk highway in 1934 as Legislative Route 122, but until that time it bore the MN-7 designation. The defined route of CR-7 from New Ulm to St. Peter was actually posted as MN-21. Clearly, from the description above, CR-7 passes through St. Peter.

No connection to post-1934 MN-7

  MN-7

West terminus: MN-28 at Beardsley
Previously --- U.S. 12 near Ortonville (1934-58)
East terminus
:
MN-100 in St. Louis Park
Previously --- U.S. 12-52 (1934-65), U.S. 169-212 (at Lake Street, later unmarked trunk hwy) (1965-88), in Minneapolis

Length: 196 Regions: WC, SW, SE, M

Counties: Big Stone, Swift, Chippewa, Kandiyohi, Meeker, McLeod, Carver, Hennepin

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 148, 319, 147, 304, 49, 119, 12

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

NHS: Segment between U.S. 75 southeast of Ortonville and U.S. 212 at Montevideo, and between I-494 and MN-100

History: Westermost segment originally designated

Two Constitutional Route segments: between Montevideo and MN-23, and east of MN-41. Continuous route authorized by 1933. Two additional very short segments added in early to late 1950s to allow connection with realigned routes at Ortonville and Montevideo. Portion from MN-28 to U.S. 12 at Ortonville formerly known as MN-103 until mid-1950s. On east end, ran along Excelsior Blvd. through Hopkins and St. Louis Park until late 1930s. Until 1988, extended east from MN-100 to intersection of Lake Street and Excelsior Blvd (even after Excelsior was no longer designated U.S. 169/212). From that point, until the mid 1960s it had previously extended east along Lake Street and north along Hennepin Avenue to U.S. 12/52 in downtown Minneapolis.

Improvements: Last unpaved sections were the old MN-103 segment and the segment east of Clara City. These were paved by 1961. Divided highway constructed Twin Cities to Excelsior by 1942. No other significant divided segments outside the Twin Cities area. Posted 60 mph except for urban zones from Montevideo to MN-25.

Comments: In the original 1934 numbering plan, this was originally intended to be called TH-66. It was not so designated on the official 1934 Minnesota highway map.

Constitutional Route 8

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the westerly limits of the city of Duluth and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on Route No. 6 near Crookston and thence extending in a westerly and northerly direction along said Route No. 6 to a point on said route northerly of Crookston and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on the east bank of the Red River of the North at East Grand Forks, affording Duluth, Floodwood, Swan River, Grand Rapids, Cass Lake, Bemidji, Bagley, Erskine, Crookston, East Grand Forks and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 2

1934 designationsU.S. 2, MN-69*, U.S. 53 

Present-day designations: U.S. 2,
MN-194, U.S. 53.


Comment:  


* Became MN-94 in 1935

No connection to U.S. 8 

    U.S. 8 West terminus: From: I-35 (exit 132) at Forest Lake
Previously --- U.S. 61 at Forest Lake (1926-31); U.S. 12-52 in downtown Minneapolis (1931-78),
I-35W (exit 21A) in Minneapolis (1978-81)
East terminus: Wisconsin State Line
(U.S. 8) at Taylors Falls
Nationally --- To: U.S.2 at Norway MI

Length (MN): 22 Region: M, EC

Counties: Washington, Chisago

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 98, 46

How numbered: U.S. Route

NHS: Entire length in Minnesota

History: West portion became (Now a county road)

U.S. 8 is an original U.S. route. West of U.S. 61, it was first marked between Forest Lake and Minneapolis around 1931, following Constitutional Route 63 --- Forest Lake Cutoff (now Lake Drive and Old Highway 8), to the Minneapolis city limits. Originally, U.S. 8 entered Minneapolis on Lowry Avenue, west to Central. By the 1940s, it followed New Brighton Blvd. southwest to Broadway, then west on Broadway to Central. Its terminus in downtown Minneapolis was 3rd Avenue and Washington Blvd. After completion of I-35W, U.S. 8 was overlaid with the interstate between Forest Lake and New Brighton Blvd., and then it terminated at the southern interchange of 35W and New Brighton Blvd. By 1980, this short section was renumbered MN-88 and U.S. 8 was terminated at its present location.

Between Wyoming and Chisago City, U.S. 8 originally followed an alignment that later became MN-98. See also comments about recently defunct MN-98.

Improvements: Paved in its entirety by 1940, though the short MN-98 segment was not constructed until after WWII. U.S. 8 and MN-98 were flip-flopped in the late 1950s. No expressway segments except for the first half mile coming off I-35.

Comments: If any highway needs drastic improvement, this is it. Between the commuter traffic from Lindstrom and Center City to the Twin Cities, and the weekend exodus from the Twin Cities to Wisconsin, this road carries far more traffic than it is capable. MnDOT is using its paltry funding to make safety spot improvements, but what is really needed is an expressway with bypasses of the towns along the way. That probably won't happen until Minnesota gets serious about highway funding, and nothing is in the 10-year plan through 2013.

Constitutional Route 9

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 3 at La Crescent and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and South Dakota southwesterly of Beaver Creek, affording La Crescent, Hokah, Houston, Rushford, Lanesboro, Preston, Fountain, Spring Valley, Austin, Albert Lea, Blue Earth, Fairmont, Jackson, Worthington, Luverne and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 16

1934 designationsU.S. 16 

Present-day designations: I-90*, MN-16


Comment:  


* Interstate route that replaced original U.S. route but as a closely parallel route still meets route description.

No connection to post-1934 MN-9

MN-9 This route has two distinct segments, connected by U.S. 75.

N/S Section - South terminus: U.S. 75 N of Wahpeton
North terminus
: U.S. 2 E of Crookston

Counties: Wilkin, Clay, Norman, Polk

E/W Section - West terminus: U.S. 75 at Doran (the original terminus of this route)
East terminus
:
MN-23 at New London
Previously --- U.S. 12 at Benson (1934-63)

Counties: Wilkin, Grant, Stevens, Pope, Swift, Kandiyohi

Length (total): 226 Regions: WC, NW

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 211, 179, 6 (N/S) and 152, 10, 210 (E/W)

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Northern segment originally East segment originally

Two Constitutional Route segments. Between MN-200 and U.S. 2, the original alignment of U.S. 75; and between MN-27 and U.S. 12. Other segments authorized 1933. Segment north of Breckenridge designated MN-82 until late 1950s. From U.S. 12 to an old alignment of U.S. 71 at New London was originally designated MN-23 until around 1940, then called MN-17 until 1963.

Improvements: Last segment to be paved was the old MN-82 segment north of Breckenridge, which was paved by 1961.

Comments: Joined together from three distinctly separate segments.

Constitutional Route 10

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the westerly limits of the city of Minneapolis and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on Route No. 6 at or near Wheaton, affording Minneapolis, Montrose, Cokato, Litchfield, Willmar, Benson, Morris, Herman, Wheaton and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 12

1934 designationsMN-27, MN-9, U.S. 12 

Present-day designations: MN-27, MN-9, U.S. 12, I-394


Comment:  

No numeric connection to U.S. 10

U.S. 10N

U.S. 10S

West terminus: U.S. 10 at Moorhead
East terminus
: U.S. 10 at St. Cloud

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s):
U.S. 10N
---
2, 37, 27
U.S. 10S
---
3*

History: U.S. 10N now
 

U.S. 10S now

From 1926, when U.S. routes were first laid out, until the mid-1930s, U.S. 52 did not exist. U.S. 10 was originally split into N- and S-legs between Moorhead and St. Cloud. U.S. 10S originally followed what later became U.S. 52, while U.S. 10N followed what later became just U.S. 10. However, the original 1934 numbering plan --- never marked --- was to replace U.S. 10S with U.S. 10 and U.S. 10N with U.S. 218.

U.S. 10N sign from the collection of Robert Edgar, Bakersfield CA.

* U.S. 10S followed a county road segment from near Fergus Falls to Evansville that became L.R. 153 in 1934 when U.S. 52 was marked along former U.S. 10S.

 U.S. 10

West terminus: ND State Line (U.S. 10) at Moorhead
Nationally ---
I-94 at West Fargo ND
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 10) at Prescott WI
Nationally ---
I-75 at Bay City MI (after crossing L. Michigan via ferry)

Length (MN): 270 Regions: WC, EC, M

Counties: Clay, Becker, Otter Tail, Wadena, Todd, Morrison, Benton, Sherburne, Anoka, Ramsey, Washington

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 2, 37, 27, 3, 62, 94

How numbered: U.S. Route

NHS: From ND State Line to MN-24 east of St. Cloud, and U.S. 169 to I-35W

History: Easternmost segment (E. of U.S. 61) originally (1934-35) designated
Segment from Moorhead to St. Cloud originally (1926-34)

U.S. 10 is an original U.S. route, although the segment east of St. Paul to Wisconsin was originally concurrent with U.S. 12 until 1935. Only non-Constitutional Route segment is east of U.S. 61 to the Wisconsin border, authorized in 1933. This segment was originally designated MN-94 in 1934-35, and U.S. 10 was marked on this route by 1935. Between Moorhead and St. Cloud, was originally designated U.S. 10N until 1933. West of Minneapolis, this route followed Constitutional Route 3 (later U.S. 52) to Anoka rather than Constitutional Route 63, the alignment by 1934. This new alignment was along Main Street and Coon Rapids Blvd. through Anoka County, bypassed by freeway around 1970, southeast on "Anoka Cutoff" to Snelling Avenue, east on County Road E and down Lexington and Como Avenues into downtown St. Paul. When I-694 and I-35E were completed in the late 1960s, 10 was duplexed with these routes.

Improvements: Paved between Twin Cities and St. Cloud as early as 1929. Remainder of route was paved by 1950. Divided highway section between Anoka and Elk River by 1942. Freeway through northwest Twin Cities suburbs from I-35W through Anoka; between University Avenue and Anoka completed mid 1970s, and completed in 1999 between I-35W and the south junction with TH-47. Divided highway along most of its length through the state, posted 65 mph along much of the way, except for 2-lane or undivided 4-lane stretches through Wadena, Staples and Motley. Some 60 mph divided segments between Elk River and Anoka. An "access management" project through Detroit Lakes bypassed the downtown core, though it was not a true city bypass on an expressway.

Future Improvements: No major projects planned on route in immediate future.

Comments: U.S. 10 is a route that has a mere vestige of its former significance. On the west, it formerly ran to Seattle, Washington, but was replaced by I-94 and I-90 west of Fargo. On the east, it still runs across Wisconsin to a ferry connection across Lake Michigan, but is one of several east-west cross-state routes. In Michigan, it was significantly shortened (having originally terminated in Detroit) after completion of I-75. It is therefore a route of only regional rather than national importance.

Visit Adam Froehlig's exit list for Highway 10.

Constitutional Route 11













MN-11

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 8 at the westerly limits of the city of Duluth and thence extending in a northwesterly and northerly direction to a point on Route No. 4 at International Falls and thence extending in a southwesterly direction along said Route No. 4 to a point on said route southwesterly of International Falls and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on Route No. 6 at Donaldson, affording Duluth, Eveleth, Virginia, Cook, Orr, Cussons, International Falls, Baudette, Warroad, Roseau, Greenbush, Donaldson and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 169 (original 1931 alignment Virginia to International Falls)

1934 designationsMN-11, U.S. 53 

Present-day designations: MN-11, U.S. 53

Comment:  
 


Post-1934 History:

West terminus: ND State Line (ND-66) at Robbin
East terminus
: Island View east of Intl. Falls

Length: 208 Regions: NW, NE

Counties: Kittson, Roseau, Lake of the Woods, Koochiching

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 172, 11, 158

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 11; remainder numbered for continuity of route.

History: Constitutional Route between U.S. 75 and International Falls. West and easternmost segments authorized 1933.

Improvements: Sections were a primitive road in 1929. Last section to be paved was the segment between the ND State Line and U.S. 75 at Donaldson; this was paved by 1961. No divided segments.

Comments: There is no numbering relationship between this route and Ontario 11. The Minnesota route has had this designation since 1920, and originally the route along the north side of the Rainy River in Ontario from Rainy River to Fort Frances was designated Ontario 71 (as an extension of U.S. 71). Then, route 11 was constructed from west of Thunder Bay westward to Fort Frances, and former route 71 was redesignated route 11 west of Fort Frances for route continuity. So, it's just a coincidence that there are two routes 11 running parallel on both sides of the border. In fact, they don't meet; it's MN-72 that crosses the border at Baudette.

Robb Tucker of Cocoa Beach, FL, provided this photo of the east end of MN-11 where it enters the Sha-Sha Resort at Island View.
Between Warroad and Baudette, part of MOM'S way...a route being promoted as an alternative to the Trans Canada Highway between Winnipeg and Thunder Bay. The route follows Manitoba 12 southeast from Winnipeg to the border, MN-313 (a short piece not given any fanfare in the organization's information) to Warroad, MN-11 to Baudette, and Ontario 11 from Rainy River east to Thunder Bay. There is a short piece of MN-72 in there too. Click the logo at left for more information.
Constitutional Route 12

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the west bank of the St. Croix River near Hudson, Wisconsin and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on the easterly limits of the city of St. Paul and then beginning at a point on the westerly limits of the city of Minneapolis and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on Route No. 6 at Madison, affording St. Paul, Minneapolis, Hopkins, Norwood, Glencoe, Olivia, Granite Falls, Montevideo, Dawson, Madison and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 212 (to east of Montevideo [but see comment]; 212 originally went to Willmar), 12 east of St. Paul

1934 designationsU.S. 212, MN-41, MN-7, U.S. 12 

Present-day designationsU.S. 212, MN-41, MN-7, [formerly MN-7 to Mpls city limits, currently MN-100, I-394*]; I-94 (U.S. 12) east of St. Paul to Wisconsin border


*Deviation from original routing due to route turnbacks, but generally meets route description

Comment:  
 The route assignment changed around 1933 when CR-12 was routed (along with U.S. 212) onto a new direct road between Granite Falls and Montevideo. The original routing became a westward extension of CR-49 and, by 1934, a new legislative route for extended MN-17 (now 23). 

The only instance where the U.S. route bore the same number as the Constitutional Route it was placed onto. This was a total conicidence and thus I can say...
No deliberate numeric connection with U.S. 12.  

U.S. 12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

West terminus: SD State Line (U.S. 12) W of Ortonville
Nationally --- U.S. 101 at Aberdeen WA
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 12) at Lakeland (along I-94). Independently marked section ends at junction with I-494 in Minnetonka.
Nationally --- MI-10 at Detroit MI

Length (MN): 192 Regions: WC, EC, M

Counties: Big Stone, Swift, Kandiyohi, Meeker, Wright, Hennepin, Ramsey, Washington

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 149, 26, 10

How numbered: U.S. route

NHS: SD State Line to U.S. 75 (Ortonville), U.S. 71 (Willmar) to I-494/394

History: U.S. 12 is an original U.S. route. Short segment west of U.S. 75 is not a Constitutional Route, thus U.S. 12 may have been routed along a county road here until 1933. Follows its original alignment.

Improvements: In 1929, only the segments between Willmar and Litchfield and between Wayzata through the Twin Cities to Wisconsin were paved. By 1940, the entire route was paved. Freeway bypasses Wayzata and joins I-394. Long Lake is bypassed by a limited access, super-2 road. Otherwise, the rest of U.S. 12 is mostly 2-lane across Minnesota.

Future Improvements: No major upgrades planned in foreseeable future.

Comments: Duplexed with I-394 and I-94 east of I-494. Not marked along this section except where I-394 intersects I-94.

West of the Twin Cities, U.S. 12 is an independent route that is generally routed far from interstates and concurrent with interstates for only short distances all the way to the Washington coast. It wouldn't be my choice to go to South Dakota, but it meets all the criteria for a U.S. route. East of the Twin Cities, however, U.S. 12 often closely parallels interstates, and is really only a route of local or regional importance east to its terminus at Detroit.

Visit Adam Froehlig's exit list for Highway 12 in the metro area (Wayzata to I-494).

Constitutional Route 13













MN-13 

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 9 at Albert Lea and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on Route No. 5 at Jordan affording Albert Lea, Waseca, Waterville, Montgomery, New Prague, Jordan and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: None

1934 designationsMN-13, MN-21 

Present-day designations: MN-13, MN-21

Comment:  
 I'd prefer to see present-day MN-13 resume this direct routing.

Post-1934 History:

South terminus: U.S. 65 at Albert Lea
North terminus
:
MN-149 in St. Paul
Previously --- Iowa state line south of Albert Lea (1934-35)

Length: 114 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Freeborn, Waseca, Le Sueur, Scott, Dakota, Ramsey

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9, 13, 117, 194

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 13; remainder so numbered for route continuity.

NHS: Segment including unnumbered spur (old MN-101) to U.S. 169, east to Cliff Road. NHS designation extends east along Cliff Road (CSAH 32) to I-35E.

History: Original southern end now

Constitutional Route between Albert Lea and New Prague, where MN-21 continues as Constitutional Route 13. Other segments authorized 1933, when the entire route assumed its current numbering. Extended south of Albert Lea to Iowa border in 1934, but this segment became U.S. 69 in 1935.

Improvements: The entire route was paved by 1940. Between New Prague and Burnsville, ran along current CSAH 27 and took a somewhat more direct path than today. Current alignment with 90 degree turn at old MN-101 opened around 1968. Divided highway between old MN-101 in Savage and north of MN-77 in Burnsville, then again from I-494 (no interchange) to MN-55. This latter segment was rerouted in 1993 over a new, circuitous connecting road as part of the Mendota Bridge reconstruction.

Comment: With the sharp turns in this route, it should be renumbered. Example: extend 13 over 21 to 169; new 213 from 19 to Savage; new 131 from U.S. 169 (old 101) to the east. This is a turnback candidate from 55 to 149.

Constitutional Route 14

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 6 at Ivanhoe and thence extending in an easterly direction to a point on Route No. 4 at Redwood Falls and thence extending in an easterly direction along said Route No. 4 to a point on said route at Morton and thence extending in an easterly direction to a point on Route No. 22, hereinafter described, at Gaylord affording Ivanhoe, Marshall, Redwood Falls, Morton, Winthrop, Gaylord and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: None

1934 designationsMN-19 

Present-day designations:
MN-19

Comment:  
 Note that this description goes west to east instead of the east-west norm.

No numeric connection with U.S. 14
 

U.S. 14

 

West terminus: SD State Line (U.S. 14) W of Lake Benton
Nationally --- Yellowstone N.P., WY
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 14) at La Crescent (with U.S. 61)
Previously --- U.S. 61 at Winona (1926-33)
Nationally --- U.S. 41 at Chicago IL

Length (MN): 290 Regions: SW, SE

Counties: Lincoln, Lyon, Redwood, Brown, Nicollet, Blue Earth, Waseca, Steele, Dodge, Olmsted, Winona

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 7, 122, 7

How numbered: U.S. Route

NHS: SD State Line to U.S. 52 (Rochester)

History: U.S. 14 is an original U.S. highway as far as Winona, and was extended east into Wisconsin in 1933. The only non-Constitutional Route segment is between Nicollet and Mankato; however, this segment was marked U.S. 14/MN-7 as early as 1927 even though Constitutional Route 7 must go through St. Peter. The state must have routed Constitutional Route 5 from St. Peter to Nicollet and then southeast to Mankato, and numbered the roads differently from their Constitutional Route designations (MN-21 from Nicollet to St. Peter, though the west end of Constitutional Route 21 is St. Peter).

Improvements: All gravel in 1929. By 1940, only the segment between Nicollet and Mankato was gravel, presumably paved shortly thereafter. Freeway segment through Mankato, with freeway/expressway extending to the east as far as the Blue Earth County line. This segment is under construction further east to Waseca. Also, there are expressway segments that bypass Owatonna and from west of Dodge Center to Rochester.

Future Improvements: Expressway to be constructed from Owatonna to Waseca, including a new southerly interchange at I-35 that will connect with a realigned U.S. 14 west of Owatonna. This will be built beginning in 2008.

Comments: Concurrent segment with U.S. 61 southeast of Winona to WI State Line. There is a U.S. 14 business route (not a trunk highway) marked through Dodge Center

Constitutional Route 15

 









MN-15

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Iowa southerly of Fairmont and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on Route No. 14 at Winthrop, affording Fairmont, Madelia, New Ulm, Winthrop and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: None

1934 designationsMN-15 

Present-day designations: MN-15

Comment:  One of the few totally unchanged Constitutional routes (except for being extended).

Post-1934 History:

South terminus
: Iowa State Line
(IA-15) S of Fairmont
North terminus
: U.S. 10 at Sauk Rapids
Previously --- U.S. 52 at St. Cloud (1934-80)

Length: 164 Regions: SW, WC

Counties: Martin, Watonwan, Brown, Nicollet, Sibley, McLeod, Meeker, Stearns, Benton

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 15, 151, 24, 239

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 15; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: Constitutional Route from Iowa line to U.S. 14 and from MN-24 south of Kimball to St. Cloud. Middle segment authorized 1933, northernmost segment in 1950. This northerly segment was originally part of MN-152 and was routed through downtown St. Cloud. Now, it bypasses central St. Cloud to the west.

Improvements: By 1940, only two short gravel sections remained, both paved by 1953. Currently, divided highway around St. Cloud from I-94 to U.S. 10 (few signals, and much of it is posted 60 mph).

Comments: I would extend this route north over U.S. 10 for 27 miles to Little Falls and connect it with MN-371. The combined route should have a single identity, which I would recommend to be MN-15. It doesn't connect to anything of consequence in Iowa that would warrant a U.S. highway designation (such as reviving the old U.S. 371 designation, which has been reused elsewhere anyway).

Constitutional Route 16

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 5 southwesterly of Mankato and thence extending westerly to a point on Route No. 15 at Madelia and thence extending in a southerly direction along said Route No. 15 to a point on said route southerly of Madelia and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on Route No. 4 northerly of Windom and thence extending in a southerly direction along said Route No. 4 to a point on said route at Windom and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point at Fulda and thence extending in a southerly direction to a point on Route No. 9 at Worthington, affording Mankato, Madelia, St. James, Windom, Fulda, Worthington and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: None

1934 designationsMN-73*, MN-62, MN-60 

Present-day designations:
U.S. 59, MN-62, MN-60

Comment:  MN-60 as the direct route between Windom and Worthington was open by 1934, leaving the Constitutional Route on the less-traveled MN-62.

* Became U.S. 59 in 1935

 No numeric connection with U.S. 16, though the routes intersected at Worthington

U.S. 16 West terminus: SD State Line near Sioux Falls
East terminus
: Wisconsin State Line at LaCrosse

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9, (80), 9

How numbered: Part of U.S. 16

History: Mostly replaced by Eastern end now

An original U.S. route. Decommissioned by 1980 when I-90 completed. Replaced by I-90 except for the segment --- now called MN-16 --- east of Austin. The original alignment until the 1940s included the segment between Wykoff and Fountain now designated MN-80. For a time after completion of I-90 near the South Dakota line, U.S. 16 was maintained as an independent route west of Luverne, later designated MN-17, now county road.

See MN-16 for other details of remaining non-interstate portion.

MN-16 West terminus: I-90 (exit 193) E of Austin
East terminus
: U.S. 14/61 at La Crescent
Previously --- Wisconsin State Line
(WI-16) at La Crescent (with U.S. 14/61) 1980-2008

Length: 88 Region: SE

Counties: Mower, Fillmore, Houston

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9, 80, 9

How numbered: Formerly U.S. 16. MN-16 is the only segment of this former route that exists as a trunk highway separate from I-90.

History: Originally part of

Constitutional Route except for segment between Wycoff and U.S. 52 west of Preston. Originally routed along current MN-80 until a direct bypass of this route was constructed in the 1940s, and then the designations of these two routes were reversed.

Improvements: All 2-lane today. The last unpaved segment was the L.R. 80 segment, paved by 1953.

Comments: One of the most scenic routes in Minnesota, especially the segment between Preston and Houston. After establishment and until recently, overlaid, like its U.S. predecessor, on U.S. 14/61 for the last mile into Wisconsin, where WI-16 is similarly co-numbered with these U.S. routes. Andrew Munsch noticed the removal of MN-16 from that segment of road.

Constitutional Route 17




 









Original MN-17

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 16 at Fulda and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on Route No. 12 at Granite Falls, affording Fulda, Slayton, Garvin, Marshall, Granite Falls and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: None

1934 designationsMN-73*, MN-17

Present-day designations:
U.S. 59, MN-23

Comment:  

*Became U.S. 59 in 1935

Post-1934 History:

South terminus
: U.S. 59 at Marshall
North terminus
: U.S. 71 at Willmar

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 17, 146, 49

How numbered: Portion numbered same as Constitutional Route designation, remainder numbered for continuity

History: now part of

In 1933 renumbering, Trunk Highway 17 designation was extended north from Granite Falls over new L.R. 146 and former Constitutional Route 49 to Willmar. By 1940, Trunk Highway 23 was extended south along former trunk highways 17 and 39 to U.S. 16. The trunk highway 17 designation was immediately recycled on the former T.H. 23 segment west of the end of this route.

  Second MN-17

 

 

West terminus: U.S. 12 at Benson
East terminus: U.S. 71 at New London

Legislative Route(s): 210

How numbered: The T.H. 17 designation was probably used because the realigned T.H. 23 occupied the former T.H. 17 from Willmar south.

History: Originally part of Now designated

Around 1940, the southwest end of T.H. 23, which had formerly gone from New London west to Benson, was realigned south along former T.H. 17 and 39. The former T.H. 23 segment west of New London became T.H. 17, and kept this designation until it was renumbered T.H. 9 around 1963.

MN-17 West terminus: I-90 (exit 3) at Beaver Creek
East terminus
: U.S. 75 at Luverne

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9

How numbered: Arbitrary designation, or maybe the closest available number to 16

History: Originally part of

When I-90 was completed around 1975, old U.S. 16 was maintained as a trunk highway for about five years west of Luverne. Probably MnDOT felt it had to maintain Constitutional Route 9 through Luverne as per the definition of this route. Now designated CSAH 4.

Constitutional Route 18















MN-18

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 3 at Elk River and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on Route No. 2 easterly of Brainerd, affording Elk River, Princeton, Milaca, Onamia and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 169 (1931)

1934 designationsU.S. 169, MN-18

Present-day designations:
U.S. 169, MN-18

Comment:  .Not clear from the above description is that the route turned west at Garrison, on Lake Mille Lacs.

Post-1934 History:

West terminus
:
MN-210 east of Brainerd
Previously ---
MN-210 in downtown Brainerd (until 2001)
East terminus
:
I-35 (exit 195) E of Finlayson
Previously --- MN-56 (now
47) at Malmo (1934-63)

Length: 84 Region: EC

Counties: Crow Wing, Aitkin, Pine

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 18, 157, 186

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 18; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: East of Lake Mille Lacs originally designated

Constitutional Route between Brainerd and U.S. 169 at Garrison. Remaining route authorized 1933. Designation ended at current junction of MN-27 and MN-47 (then MN-56) until mid 1950s. The current segment of MN-18 between MN-47 and MN-65 was then designated MN-27, and the current segment between MN-65 and MN-23 north of Sandstone was first designated MN-66.

Improvements: By 1940, the only paved section was Brainerd to Garrison. The last unpaved segment was east of MN-47 to MN-65, paved in the late 1960s. The westernmost part of this route (west of TH-25 in Brainerd) was turned back to the city of Brainerd in 2001 after completion of the TH-371 Brainerd bypass.

Constitutional Route 19

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 2 at Brainerd and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on Route No. 8 at Cass Lake, affording Brainerd, Pine River, Walker, Cass Lake and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 371 (1932)

1934 designations
U.S. 371

Present-day designations:
MN-371

Comment:  .


No connection with post-1934 MN-19 

MN-19 West terminus: SD State Line (SD-30) W of Ivanhoe
East terminus
: U.S. 61 near Red Wing

Length: 198 Regions: SW, SE

Counties: Lincoln, Lyon, Redwood, Renville, Sibley, Scott/Le Sueur, Rice, (Dakota), Goodhue

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 90, 14, 100

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Constitutional Route between U.S. 75 and MN-15, west and east segments authorized 1933.

Improvements: Last segment to be paved was in the mid-1950s, east of New Prague. No divided segments. Interchange completed around 2002 at the very dangerous intersection with U.S. 169.

Comments: Route essentially crosses the state, ending at Red Wing about five miles west of the bridge to Wisconsin.

Constitutional Route 20



 












MN-20

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on the boundary line between the states of Minnesota and Iowa near Canton and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on Route No. 9 at or near Preston and thence extending in a northwesterly direction along said Route No. 9 to a point on said route at Fountain and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on Route No. 3 in the town of Douglas, Dakota County (T. 113, R. 17 W.) affording Canton, Harmony, Preston, Fountain, Chatfield, Oronoco, Pine Island, Zumbrota, Cannon Falls and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 55

1934 designations
U.S. 52, MN-20

Present-day designations: U.S..52,
MN-20

Comment:  .The very north end was a relatively insignificant piece of state road, while the rest carried the main road from Rochester to Minneapolis, U.S. 55.  From Cannon Falls, US. 55 proceeded northwest on CR-50.

Post-1934 History:

West terminus
:
MN-19 at Cannon Falls
East terminus
: U.S. 61 near Miesville

Length: 6 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Goodhue, Dakota

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 20

How numbered: Constitutional route number

History: This is the only segment of Constitutional Route 20 that was not part of a U.S. route.

Improvements: Paved by 1940.

Comments: Currently, there are no signs at the exit from U.S. 52 at Cannon Falls that indicate the short connection via MN-19 to MN-20, though at the end of the offramps the connection is indicated.

Constitutional Route 2












MN-21

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 20 at Zumbrota and thence extending in a westerly direction to a point on Route No. 5 at St. Peter, affording Zumbrota, Kenyon, Faribault, Le Sueur Center, Cleveland, St. Peter and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: none

1934 designations
MN-99, MN-21, MN-60

Present-day designations
MN-99, MN-21, MN-60

Comment:  See also CR-7. Unlike the legal description, Route 21 was marked west of St. Peter over CR-7 to Nicollet. 
 

Post-1934 History:

South terminus
:
MN-60 at Faribault
North terminus
: U.S. 169 at Jordan

Length: 38 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Rice, Le Sueur, Scott

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 1, 21, 13

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 21; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: All part of Constitutional Routes. Northernmost part (New Prague to Jordan) was redesignated as MN-21 in 1934.

Improvements: Paved north of MN-19 by 1940, rest of route by after WWII. Southernmost part through Faribault is second-generation former U.S. 65, constructed in the late 1950s, which was connected to a divided highway coming off I-35 in the 1960s.

Constitutional Route 22














MN-22

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 5 at St. Peter and thence extending in a northwesterly direction to a point on Route No. 4 at Paynesville, affording St. Peter, Gaylord, Glencoe, Hutchinson, Litchfield, Paynesville and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: none

1934 designations
MN-22, MN-55

Present-day designations
MN-22, MN-55

Comment: 
 

Post-1934 History:

South terminus
: Iowa State Line (county road) S of Kiester
North terminus
:
MN-23 at Richmond
Previously ---
MN-55 at Eden Valley (1934-61)

Length: 166 Regions: SE, SW, WC

Counties: Faribault, Blue Earth, Le Sueur, Nicollet, Sibley, McLeod, Meeker, Stearns

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 87, 39, 5, 22, 321

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 22; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: Mankato to St. Peter follows original route of

Three different Constitutional Routes segments between I-90 and MN-55. Southernmost segment added 1933, northermost segment added around 1960. The portion of this route between Mankato and St. Peter was the original alignment of U.S. 169. When the parallel route west of the Minnesota River was first completed in the late 1950s, it originally carried the MN-22 designation for a few years until it was redesignated U.S. 169 and MN-22 reverted to its original alignment.

Improvements: Paved in its entirety by 1953. The segment southeast of Mankato to U.S. 14 constructed around 1990. A connection between this interchange and the current alignment north of Mankato is planned.

Constitutional Route 23
















MN-23

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 4 at Paynesville and thence extending in a northeasterly direction through the village of Richmond, Coldspring, Rockville and Waite Park to a point on Route No. 3 westerly of St. Cloud, and thence extending in a northeasterly direction to a point on Route No. 5 southerly of Mora, and thence extending in a northerly direction along said Route No. 5 to a point on said route at Mora, and thence extending in an easterly direction to a point on Route No. 1 southerly of Hinckley, affording Paynesville, St. Cloud, Foley, Milaca, Ogilvie, Mora and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: none

1934 designations
MN-23

Present-day designations
MN-23

Comment: 
 

Post-1934 History:

South(west) terminus
:
I-90 (exit 1) near SD State Line, W of Beaver Creek
Previously --- U.S. 12 at Benson (1934-40)
North(east) terminus
:
I-35 (exit 251B) at Duluth
Previously --- U.S. 2/61 at Duluth (1934-63), U.S./
MN-61 E of Duluth (1963-97)

Length: 340 Regions: SW, WC, EC, NE

Counties: Rock, Pipestone, Lincoln, Lyon, Yellow Medicine, Chippewa, (Renville), Kandiyohi, Stearns, Benton, Mille Lacs, Kanabec, Pine, Carlton, St. Louis

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 88, 17, 146, 49, 23, 1, 186, 185

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 23; remainder numbered for route continuity.

NHS: From I-90 near the SD border to I-35 near Hinckley

History: Part of current route originally Part of original route now

Constitutional Route segments between Marshall and Hinckley. Remainder authorized 1933. Originally designated MN-39 from its south terminus to Marshall, and MN-17 from Marshall to Willmar until around 1940. The MN-23 designation originally extended west from New London to Benson along current MN-9 (which was also MN-17 from around 1940 to the 1960s.) Originally ran through Sandstone along route that later became MN-123 to just west of Askov; redesignated around 1946. After completion of I-35, the state maintained MN-23 (as an extension of Constitutional Route 1) through Hinckley and Sandstone. The portion through Sandstone was shown on the 1997-98 Minnesota Highway map as being turned back but is shown as a trunk highway on the 1999-2000 map, as is TH-123. (May be a mandatory segment of Constitutional Route 1 if I-35 does not go through Sandstone). Formerly ran through Duluth (L.R. 281, originally marked MN-281 1950-63) along Michigan/1st and Superior/3rd Sts to MN-61; this section turned back in 1997.

Special Commentary: The DeSoto Bridge, a 1959 steel truss structure similar in design to the doomed I-35W bridge in Minneapolis, which crosses the Missisippi River at St. Cloud, was suddenly closed in March, 2008. MnDOT inspectors found bent gusset plates, the same condition thought to be the cause of the I-35W bridge collapse. MnDOT determined that the bridge would not be temporarily repaired, but rather that its replacement (which had been programmed for a few years out) would be advanced. Replacement should be complete by the end of 2009.

Improvements: Original alignment from U.S. 16 to Jasper was along CSAH 9; new alignment built around 1940. Various segments paved from 30s through 50s, entire route was paved by 1961. Bypass of Willmar opened around 1987, second carriageway of this opened around 2002. Expressway from New London to Spicer now open, as well as from Cold Spring to Waite Park (St. Cloud). Posted 60 mph except for urban segments from its southern terminus to Willmar.

Future Construction: A bypass of Paynesville is programmed for 2012. Four-laning this route from MN-95 to MN-25 is programmed for 2011-12.

Comments: Runs diagonally across the state from southwest to northeast. A short (< 1 mile) portion runs through Wisconsin but is maintained by MnDOT under agreement between the two states. See Chris Bessert's Wisconsin Highways page for a comment on this short Wisconsin segment.

Constitutional Route 24













MN-24

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 10 at Litchfield and thence extending in a northeasterly direction to a point on Route No. 3 at St. Cloud, affording Litchfield, St. Cloud and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: none

1934 designations
MN-24, MN-15

Present-day designations
MN-24, MN-15

Comment:  After the 1934 route changes, MN-24 was a relatively short route that ended at MN-15 until, as discussed below, it was merged with Legislative Route 240 and extended to U.S. 10 southeast of St.Cloud.

Post-1934 History:

South(west) terminus
: U.S. 12 at Litchfield
North(east) terminus
: U.S. 10 at Clear Lake
Previously ---
MN-15 S of Kimball (1934-63)

Length: 47 Regions: WC, EC

Counties: Meeker, Stearns, Wright, Sherburne

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 24, 240

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 24; remainder numbered for route continuity.

NHS: The connection between I-94 and U.S. 10

History: Eastern segment originally

Constitutional Route between Litchfield and MN-15. (Constitutional Route 24 designation continues to St. Cloud along MN-15). Other segment from MN-55 to U.S. 10 added around 1950, originally designated MN-240 like its L.R. number until 1963.

Future Construction: Not yet programmed, but the connection between I-94 and U.S. 10 south of St. Cloud will likely be a freeway-type connection.

Improvements: Gravel before WWII, all paved by 1953.

Constitutional Route 25












MN-25

CONSTITUTIONAL ROUTE Posted 1920-33
Beginning at a point on Route No. 5 at or near Belle Plaine and thence extending in a northerly direction to a point on Route No. 3 at Big Lake, affording Belle Plaine, Norwood, Watertown, Montrose, Buffalo, Monticello, Big Lake and intervening and adjacent communities a reasonable means of communication, each with the other and other places within the state.

1927-33 U.S. Highways: 
none

1934 designations
MN-25

Present-day designations
MN-25

Comment: Another route unchanged except by being extended north of U.S. 10.

Post-1934 History:

South terminus
: U.S. 169 near Belle Plaine
North terminus
:
MN-210 just east of downtown Brainerd
Previously --- U.S. 10 at Big Lake (1934-63), and Merrifield (N of Brainerd) (1963-2001)

Length: 167 Regions: M, SE, EC, NE

Counties: Scott, Sibley, Carver, Wright, Sherburne, Benton, Morrison, Crow Wing

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 25, 209, 305, 233

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 25; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: Northern segment originally

Constitutional Route between Belle Plaine and Big Lake. Segment between U.S. 10 and Brainerd authorized 1933 and originally designated MN-218. Short segment between MN-18 and MN-210 in Brainerd authorized around 1960, north of Brainerd in 1950. MN-218 redesignated as MN-25 in 1963. The northernmost segment between TH-210 and Merrifield was turned back to Crow Wing County in 2001, and L.R. 305 and 233 were eliminated.

Improvements: Paved south of U.S. 212 by 1940, remainder south of U.S. 10 by 1953. Former MN-218 north of U.S. 10 paved by 1961. No divided segments along route.

Future Improvements: Four-lanes planned from MN-55 at Buffalo to Monticello, programmed for 2015-16.

Comment: Several sharp turns make this a somewhat questionable single route. One logical shortcut would be Sherburne County 11 to bypass Big Lake to the north, but since Big Lake is listed in the Constitutional Route description, that would require another legislative route to be established. Carver County's 2030 transportation plan shows 25 relocated onto a new alignment north of U.S. 212 that more closely lines up with 5/25 as it enters Norwood-Young America from the south. This would eventually angle northeast to Watertown.

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  Last updated November 14, 2010

 

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