VIRGINIA, Minn. (AP) - The Minnesota Department of Transportation will relocate part of U.S. Highway 53 near Virginia so United Taconite can mine beneath the current highway.
A 1960 easement requires the state to move the highway at the company's request. Maureen Talarico, spokeswoman for Cliffs Natural Resources, which owns United Taconite, says the deposit has a "substantial amount of good ore."
The easement required the state to move the highway within three years of the company's request. But MnDOT spokesman John Bray tells the Duluth News Tribune the move will not happen that quickly.
Bray says MnDOT has asked Cliffs for seven years, "and they are going to give us seven years."
MnDOT project manager Brian Larson said it wasn't clear how much it would cost to reroute the highway, which is about three-quarters of a mile but may need to be much longer when relocated. ---
Information from: Duluth News Tribune, http://www.duluthsuperior.com
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