Ready or not, here it comes.
After being talked about for years, the day of reckoning is upon us.
The Highway 169 reconstruction project through Blue Earth is going to finally get underway this week.
It was postponed several times in the past few years, and even suffered a setback just in the past couple of months.
But, all that is behind us, and the road will start being torn up this week.
Detours will be going into place. And, while it might take you a little bit to figure out the best route you should take to get from here to there, it will be possible.
Local folks should be able to quickly pick up on how they can get from point A to point B.
For traffic going north and south on Highway 169, they will have their detoured route clearly marked. And, while they will have a few miles to go out of their way, it really won't be too bad.
For those of us who drive around Blue Earth every day, there will be a learning curve, but we should be able to find our way.
There will just be this big road construction project in our way if we want to get from the east side of the city to the west side or vise-versa. But, I am sure we will be able to figure it out.
There should be a way across Highway 169 all summer long. You just might have to go a little or a lot out of of your way to find it.
There are four guys who are going to find they have a shorter way to work than they normally do, thanks to the Highway 169 project.
Joe Ryder, Gary Bussinger, Bill Ahl and Tyler Stindtman are all MnDOT road construction project inspectors. They all work out of the Mankato MnDOT office.
Normally they head all over southern Minnesota to inspect projects as far away as the South Dakota border.
This summer they get to stay practically in their own backyard.
You see, Ahl is from Winnebago, Bussinger is from Blue Earth, Ryder is from just east of Blue Earth and Stindtman is orginally from Blue Earth.
They will be making sure that Ulland Brothers Construction, the company that is doing all the work, does it right. Their job descriptions are "contract administrators."
They should be taking a little extra pride in how this work is done this summer. After all, it is right in their home area.
While the rest of the summer will be a hassle to get around town at least in certain places when the whole thing is done it will be very nice.
Yes, there will be three roundabouts. Yes, you will have to learn how to navigate them.
It is a bit surprising how much animosity towards these traffic control circles had been generated in the past year or so.
People hate them, fear driving in them, and blame them for all the evil in this world.
But, MnDOT is building them all over the state, not just here. So guess what? We better all get used to them.
There is a rainbow at the end of the mess and detouring around we are going to have to put up with this summer.
When it is all over, the overall look of this main thoroughfare through Blue Earth should be much improved. In fact, I am hopeful that it will be downright gorgeous, an attractive entrance to this fair city from the north and the south.
Roundabouts and all.
But, for now, it is all a question of how do I get from here to there...