RED WING, Minn. — The clock is ticking for the city of Red Wing. In a matter of a few days or at maximum a few weeks, the Mississippi River will rise.
Problem is, that the city is working on two major construction projects.
One of those projects is the continuation of the River Town Renaissance project that's already in Phase 2 along the mighty Mississippi.
"The project in totality is about $8 million and it includes installation of about 600 to 700 sheet pile wall, a new promenade and additional docking ability," project manager Ron Seymour said.
The completion of the project would mean that bigger boats can come into Red Wing via the river, and the community will become more accessible to pedestrians. The goal is to have it complete by summer, and with the river levels projected rise, it seems like a big task.
However, Seymour says Red Wing folks know how to work around the gift of the water.
"We have contingency planning, we have standard operating procedures that we put in place," Seymour explained. "We're ready for it."
Just down the Mississippi MnDOT's sentiment was the same.
"We're working on a Winona crossing as well, so you know the river is something you have to deal with," said MnDOT's Red Wing Bridge project manager Mark Anderson.
A bridge doesn't come up overnight but crews will be working around the clock until at least the girders have been put up. Girders are bridge structures that support the concrete platform.
"Once they get that done, they can continue to work without the river affecting them too much," Anderson said.
The target completion date for that is about 10 or so days, hence the 24-hour construction. By the time the river reaches its full "height" the causeway that the MnDOT crews are working on may be fully submerged on the Wisconsin side of the project. Anderson explained that last year, flood levels were similar--deep enough to submerge the causeway.
He says they're hoping to get the girders up before then.