This summer, the Minnesota Department of Transportation gave Hwy. 110 through Mendota Heights a pavement upgrade. Next summer it will give the highway a new name.
The agency will renumber the segment of Hwy. 110 between the Mendota Bridge and I-494 to Hwy. 62 to allow for the route to maintain the same name from end to end as it runs from Minnetonka to Inver Grove Heights.
"There are not many roads that change into different names like this one does," said MnDOT spokeswoman Kirsten Klein. "This will make it more streamlined."
The east-west Crosstown Hwy. 62 becomes Hwy. 55 at Hiawatha Avenue, which continues across the Mendota Bridge. On the east end of the bridge, the highway continues into Mendota Heights as Hwy. 110 as Hwy. 55 splits off and heads into Eagan. The segment between Hiawatha Avenue and the east end of the Mendota Bridge will be signed as both Hwy. 62 and Hwy. 55 and will run together.
MnDOT began considering the change after getting complaints from drivers leaving the airport who were having trouble finding Hwy. 62. People also were confused by the numbering convention even though it was one continuous route, Klein said.
The new Hwy. 62 signs will go up in July 2018.
Ryan Ruzek, public works director in Mendota Heights, said the city recently learned of MnDOT's plan to renumber the highway through an e-mail.
"We were not supportive of the change," he said. Hwy. 110 bisects Mendota Heights and had become part of the city's identity.
But the city is getting on board with the change by hosting an open house at city hall from 5 to 7 p.m., Monday to explain to business owners and residents what the impact will be. And he said there could be a positive in the end.
"It will be a good thing to clean up all the addresses," Ruzek said. "We're going with it."
In total, about 50 properties, including a handful of residential and commercial properties in Sunfish Lake, Inver Grove Heights and West St. Paul will also get new addresses when the highway change kicks in, Klein said.
Among them is Mauer Chevrolet at the intersection of Hwy. 110 and I-494. The change will mean ordering new supplies, including business cards, envelopes and stationary with letterhead, said office manager Sandi Gramlich.
"That is kind of a pain in the butt to change everything you have, but at least they are giving us as much time as possible," she said.
MnDOT will spend about $30,000 to post signs to note the new name. It also will have signs that read "Old Hwy. 110" that will remain up for a year as drivers make the adjustment to the new name, Klein said.