Gov. Mark Dayton and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker Friday celebrated the recent signing of St. Croix bridge legislation near the site of the Stillwater Lift Bridge.
The event was their first public appearance together since President Barack Obama signed the bridge bill more than a week ago.
At a waterfront park in downtown Stillwater, Dayton told reporters the new $676 million bridge will boost the economies of both states and create more than 6,000 jobs over the next three years.
"Other than the few days a year when the Packers are playing the Vikings and the Badgers are playing the Gophers, we want to welcome Wisconsonites here to work here," Dayton said. "It benefits Minnesota, in terms of state income taxes paid; same as they would if they were Minnesota residents. They pay sales taxes here same as they would if they were Minnesota residents or anywhere else"
The new four-lane bridge will connect Oak Park Heights and St. Joseph, Wis. across the St. Croix River. Construction of the new bridge is expected to begin in 2014 and will take about three years to complete. The historic Stillwater Lift Bridge will become a bicycle and pedestrian trail.