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MnDOT to lower speed limit on Highway 61 north of Hastings bridge

The Minnesota Department of Transportation told elected officials in Hastings on Wednesday afternoon they planned to reduce the speed limit on Highway 61 between the Hastings bridge and U.S. Highway 10.

The current 60 mph speed limit will remain in place between The Point Restaurant and the end of the concrete barrier for southbound travelers. When drivers traveling south reach the end of the barrier, the speed limit will be reduced to 50 mph.

The speed limit will remain 50 until drivers reach the bridge.

It is expected that MnDOT will have signs up about the new limit before Memorial Day.

Enforcement will be stepped up in the area.

There will not be a temporary median placed on the roadway between now and when bridge construction begins later this summer. Work is under way, though, at configuring the new bridge so as to allow such a median to be permanent.

The speed limit issue came to the forefront after another fatal crash just north of the bridge on May 3. Six people have died on the stretch of road between the bridge and The Point since 2005.