It had been decades in the planning, years in the making, and it was big news when it opened last summer. Now, though, Minnesota's St. Croix River Crossing bridge in Stillwater is already one year old.

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My wife and I took a trip up to Stillwater shortly after the then-brand-new bridge opened last August and took a trip across the St. Croix River on the new span. It's a pretty cool design and is very scenic. Plus, it totally got rid of all that congestion that used to clog downtown Stillwater during peak drive times.

After decades of discussion and disagreement, construction on the new bridge (which was a joint project between MnDOT and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation) that links Minnesota Highway-36 with Wisconsin Highway-64 near Stillwater started back in 2013.

It bridge itself took over 4 years and cost nearly $383 million dollars to build, with another nearly 30 million dollars to build the bridge approaches on both the Minnesota and Wisconsin sides. It officially opened on August 2, 2017, and just celebrated its first anniversary.

And, the old Stillwater Lift Bridge-- which is part of the identity of that Minnesota city itself-- didn't get torn down, thankfully. The historic bridge, which opened to traffic back in 1931(!!!) is in the process of being converted to a bicycle/pedestrian crossing that will become part of a five-mile “loop trail” system connecting the new river bridge with the historic bridge. It's expected to re-open sometime next summer.

MnDOT put together this cool time-lapse video of what it took to construct the big bridge. It's pretty cool! Check it out...

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