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John A. Weeks III
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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
Old Chaska Bridge
Former MN-41 Minnesota River Crossing
Chaska, MN

Old MN-41 Bridge

• Structure ID: NBI: 9010.
• Location: River Mile 31.6.
• River Elevation: 695 Feet.
• Highway: Former MN-41.
• Daily Traffic Count: 15,800 (2004).
• Bridge Type: Steel Girder, Concrete Deck.
• Length: 530 Feet.
• Width: 30 Feet, 2 Lanes.
• Navigation Channel Width: Non-Navigable.
• Height Above Water: 18 Feet (Estimated).
• Date Built: Opened 1960.
This is the former Minnesota State highway MN-41 bridge crossing the Minnesota River on the south side of Chaska, Minnesota. As of August, 2006, this bridge no longer exists. It once connected the city of Chaska on the north side of the river to US-169 on the south side of the river. It had the honor of being the second most busy 2-lane highway bridge in Minnesota, second after the Hastings High Bridge on US-61.

This bridge was still serviceable, but it needed some serious maintenance attention. In addition, highway traffic has grown beyond what this bridge could handle. MN-DOT very much wanted a four lane bridge at this location. When the cost of repairs of the bridge was considered, and options for adding lanes were compared, it became clear that it would cost less in the long run to simply replace this bridge with a modern four lane bridge.

Construction of the replacement bridge started by building a new two lane span for northbound traffic just downriver from this bridge. Once traffic was moved to the new bridge, this old bridge was removed. The space vacated by this bridge was used to build the southbound lanes of the new bridge. This complex sequence of events allowed two lanes of traffic to be open during the entire bridge replacement project.

The photo above is the upstream face of the bridge as seen from the overlook at the northwest corner of the structure.

Old MN-41 Bridge
The photo above is a view of the north end of the bridge from the sidewalk at the northwest corner of the structure. The photo below is a view from a riverside park looking east from the north bank of the Minnesota River.

Old MN-41 Bridge

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