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Northbound traffic to be routed onto new Hastings bridge on Monday; bridge to open in full on Nov. 17

There's good news and bad news for residents of the area who take the Highway 61 bridge over the Mississippi River in Hastings.

First, the good news: Just after rush hour on Monday, Nov. 4, northbound traffic will be routed onto the new bridge. Initially, there will be just one lane open in each direction on the new bridge. 

Second, the bad news: The crews working on the bridge need the space between the two lanes of travel to work on the median. Ultimately, this will end up causing some significant delays for southbound travelers as they come into Hastings. Crews will be doing a fair amount of work immediately south of the bridge, and that work will extend almost all the way to Fourth Street. That means that southbound traffic will remain confined to one lane past the Fourth Street stoplight. Only after going through the intersection will travelers get to spread out to two lanes. That means half as many cars will be able to get through the light at Fourth Street, and this will likely result in some long delays.

But back to the good news: It will only be like this until Nov. 17, when the bridge opens in full. That's right -- both lanes of the new bridge will be open on Nov. 17.