Table heading



West terminus: ND State Line (ND-54) at Oslo
East terminus:
MN-61 near Finland
(Now, that's a pair of towns that show the origins of northern Minnesota's early settlers!)

Length: 346 Regions: NW, NE

Counties: Marshall, Pennington, Beltrami, Clearwater, Itasca, St. Louis, Lake

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 173, 33, 170, 166, 160

How numbered: Given the TH-1 designation because it was one of the longest trunk highways, and would allow re-use of the Rt. 1 markers removed from along U.S. 65 and 61 in 1934*.

History: Authorized 1933, except for Constitutional Route segment between U.S. 75 and MN-32 at Thief River Falls.

Improvements: As recently as 1963, significant portions were unpaved. Last unpaved segment was bypassed about 1996 by swapping for a paved county road segment east of U.S. 53.

Comments: Probably the longest state-numbered trunk highway, both now and when the routes were first laid out in 1933. (For a while, TH-23 may have been a little longer.) Passing through Cook? Check out the folksy web site at

*This latter comment (taken from Minnesota Highway News in 1934, is at odds with the report that all renumbering was done in one day, and that the new routes were marked with white rather than yellow stars.

U.S. 2









West terminus: ND State Line (U.S. 2) at East Grand Forks
Nationally ---
I-5 at Everett WA
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 2) at Duluth
Nationally ---
I-75 at St. Ignace MI [western segment of U.S. 2]

Length (MN): 262 Regions: NW, NE

Counties: Polk, Clearwater, Beltrami, Hubbard, Cass, Itasca, Aitkin, St. Louis

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 8, 203

How numbered: U.S. route

NHS: Entire length in Minnesota

History: One of the original U.S. routes. All of route is Constitutional Route except between the junction with MN-194 and the Wisconsin border, authorized 1933. Original eastern part of route ran due east from Floodwood to Constitutional Route 11 (now U.S. 53), north of current path of U.S. 2 and MN-194.

Improvements: Fully paved before 1940. A few short divided segments were constructed west of Bemidji during the 1960s. Now, from Cass Lake west, this route is generally built to expressway standards and posted 65 mph. From Cass Lake to Duluth, there are only a couple of divided segments, but the non-urban portions of this segment are posted 60 mph.

Future Improvements: A new interchange with MN-89 is planned for 2012.

Comments: U.S. 2 is a major non-interstate route from Washington to Michigan. The route number is repeated in a non-connected segment from U.S. 11 near the Canadian border in New York to the Canadian Border in Maine. It is essentially unchanged from its original routing east of Idaho except for decommissioning of the portion that followed present-day I-75 from St. Ignace to Sault Ste. Marie, MI.

U.S. 2 Business (E. Grand Forks)





West terminus: ND State Line (U.S. 2 Business) at Grand Forks/E Grand Forks
East terminus
: U.S. 2 E of East Grand Forks

Length: 3 Region: NW County: Polk

Legislative Route(s): 307

How numbered: Business route

History: Originally part of then redesignated

Authorized around 1955, Grand Forks bypass (U.S. 2) was constructed around 1968. When the U.S. 2 bypass was first completed in the late 1960s, this route was originally designated MN-202.

Improvements: The bypass to Grand Forks was the main improvement, this being the original route through town.

Comments: Business route and old U.S. 2 through East Grand Forks; one of only two trunk highways exclusively designated as a business route (the other being Business MN-371). Marked with a standard U.S. 2 marker and a "BUSINESS" banner on top. Included on the District's potential future turnback list.

  Original MN-3

West terminus: ND State Line (ND-13) at Breckenridge
East terminus
: U.S. 10 at Staples

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 3, 36, 183

How numbered: Part of route was Constitutional Route 3; remainder numbered for continuity

History: Now designated

In 1934 renumbering, Trunk Highway 3 designation was extended east from Fergus Falls over former Constitutional Route 36 and new Legislative Route 183 to U.S. 10. Redesignated by mid-1950s as MN-210.

MN-3 South terminus: MN-21 at Faribault
Previously --- U.S. 14 at Owatonna (1963-65),
MN-60 at Faribault (1965-68)
North terminus
I-494 at Inver Grove Heights
Previously --- U.S. 212 (1963-72) and
I-94 (1972-94)

Length: 43 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Rice, Dakota

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 1, 115

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Original route of U.S. 65 from Faribault to "Wescott" (today's junction TH-3 and 149 in Eagan) 1927-34. (65 then extended to St. Paul along today's 149). Also U.S. 65 south of Farmington until 1957.

In addition to U.S. 65, was designated



Constitutional Route between Faribault and junction MN-149; part of original (1926) U.S. 65 south of this junction. Changed to U.S. 218 in 1934 and MN-218 in 1935, and as such originally ran duplexed with U.S. 65 from Owatonna and as an independent route north from Farmington. Around 1957, U.S. 65 was rerouted onto L.R. 101 between Faribault and Lakeville. By 1958, a new alignment of U.S. 65 west of Faribault replaced the previous alignment of U.S. 65. I-35 was completed in the Owatonna to Faribault segment around this time but MN-218 was maintained as a trunk highway parallel to the freeway until around 1965. The entire route was renumbered MN-3 in 1963. North of I-494, MN-3 was routed from Robert Street onto the newly constructed Lafayette Freeway in the late 1970s. When the Lafayette Freeway was completed between I-494 and U.S. 52, the entire stretch of freeway was redesignated U.S. 52 and MN-3 was terminated at I-494.

Improvements: Paved as early as 1929. Short divided portion near Northfield but no expressway segments at this time.

Comments: Currently, there is no sign indicating the short connection to MN-3 from I-35 via MN-21.




South terminus: Iowa State Line (IA-4) S of Dunnell
North terminus
I-94 near Sauk Centre

Length: 162 Regions: SW, WC

Counties: Martin, Watonwan, Brown, Renville, Meeker, Stearns, Kandiyohi

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 84, 70, 150, 4

History: Constitutional Route segments between MN-19 and U.S. 212, and between MN-55 and I-94. Other segments authorized 1933.

Improvements: Fully paved by 1961. No significant divided segments.

How numbered: Small part of route is Constitutional Route 4 (most of which is U.S. 71); remainder numbered as such for continuity


West terminus: MN-22 at Gaylord
East terminus
MN-36 at Stillwater
Previously: U.S. 61 (Kellogg Blvd. At Mounds Blvd) in St. Paul (1934-82)

Length: 85 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Sibley, Carver, Hennepin, Ramsey, Washington

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 121, 52, 111, 102, 109, 45

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

NHS: Between I-494 and MN-55

History: Easternmost segment previously designated

Constitutional Route segments between U.S. 212 and St. Paul city limits, and east of St. Paul city limits; rest authorized 1933. Section from downtown St. Paul to junction with MN-36 formerly marked MN-212 until around 1983. Original alignment at its east end in downtown St. Paul was from West 7th St. to Kellogg Blvd., then east to Mounds Blvd. (U.S. 61).

Improvements: Fully paved by 1953. Now being improved west of I-494 by construction of additional divided highway west of (old) MN-101. Just west of I-494, being improved to freeway status in a segment that will ultimately be the new route of U.S. 212. Freeway segment between I-494 and Mississippi River, past Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Divided highway east of MN-120 in Washington County for several miles.

Comments: Duplexed with I-494 for 11 miles and with MN-19 for about 5 miles east of its western terminus. East of U.S. 212, this route serves as a major feeder to bedroom communities southwest of the Twin Cities. At one time, a freeway connection had been proposed between the junction of MN-5 (then called MN-212) with MN-120 and the junction of I-94 and U.S. 10-61, and this route’s odd alignment between I-494 and MN-120 (bypassing the former alignment along Stillwater Road) is due to this plan, now abandoned.

In the original 1934 numbering plan, this would have been MN-26 west of the junction with MN-101, and U.S. 212 from that junction east along 78th Street and St. Paul's West 7th St. to downtown St. Paul.


South terminus: MN-18 W of Garrison (signed from the 18/U.S. 169 junction)
North terminus
: U.S. 71 at Big Falls

Length: 143 Regions: EC, NE

Counties: Crow Wing, Cass, Itasca, Koochiching

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 137, 34, 61

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Two northern segments north of MN-200 are Constitutional Route. Segment south of this point authorized 1933.

Improvements: Fully paved by 1970. No divided sections.


West terminus: MN-28 at Beardsley
Previously --- U.S. 12 near Ortonville (1934-58)
East terminus
MN-100 in St. Louis Park
Previously --- U.S. 12-52 (1934-65), U.S. 169-212 (at Lake Street, later unmarked trunk hwy) (1965-88), in Minneapolis

Length: 196 Regions: WC, SW, SE, M

Counties: Big Stone, Swift, Chippewa, Kandiyohi, Meeker, McLeod, Carver, Hennepin

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 148, 319, 147, 304, 49, 119, 12

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

NHS: Segment between U.S. 75 southeast of Ortonville and U.S. 212 at Montevideo, and between I-494 and MN-100

History: Westermost segment originally designated

Two Constitutional Route segments: between Montevideo and MN-23, and east of MN-41. Continuous route authorized by 1933. Two additional very short segments added in early to late 1950s to allow connection with realigned routes at Ortonville and Montevideo. Portion from MN-28 to U.S. 12 at Ortonville formerly known as MN-103 until mid-1950s. On east end, ran along Excelsior Blvd. through Hopkins and St. Louis Park until late 1930s. Until 1988, extended east from MN-100 to intersection of Lake Street and Excelsior Blvd (even after Excelsior was no longer designated U.S. 169/212). From that point, until the mid 1960s it had previously extended east along Lake Street and north along Hennepin Avenue to U.S. 12/52 in downtown Minneapolis.

Improvements: Last unpaved sections were the old MN-103 segment and the segment east of Clara City. These were paved by 1961. Divided highway constructed Twin Cities to Excelsior by 1942. No other significant divided segments outside the Twin Cities area. Posted 60 mph except for urban zones from Montevideo to MN-25.

Comments: In the original 1934 numbering plan, this was originally intended to be called TH-66. It was not so designated on the official 1934 Minnesota highway map.

    U.S. 8 West terminus: From: I-35 at Forest Lake
Previously --- U.S. 61 at Forest Lake (1926-31); U.S. 12-52 in downtown Minneapolis (1931-78), I-35W in Minneapolis (1978-81)
East terminus: Wisconsin State Line
(U.S. 8) at Taylors Falls
Nationally --- To: U.S.2 at Norway MI

Length (MN): 22 Region: M, EC

Counties: Washington, Chisago

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 98, 46

How numbered: U.S. Route

NHS: Entire length in Minnesota

History: West portion became (Now a county road)

U.S. 8 is an original U.S. route. West of U.S. 61, it was first marked between Forest Lake and Minneapolis around 1931, following Constitutional Route 63 --- Forest Lake Cutoff (now Lake Drive and Old Highway 8), to the Minneapolis city limits. Originally, U.S. 8 entered Minneapolis on Lowry Avenue, west to Central. By the 1940s, it followed New Brighton Blvd. southwest to Broadway, then west on Broadway to Central. Its terminus in downtown Minneapolis was 3rd Avenue and Washington Blvd. After completion of I-35W, U.S. 8 was duplexed with the interstate between Forest Lake and New Brighton Blvd., and then it terminated at the southern interchange of 35W and New Brighton Blvd. By 1980, this short section was renumbered MN-88 and U.S. 8 was terminated at its present location.

Between Wyoming and Chisago City, U.S. 8 originally followed an alignment that later became MN-98. See also comments about recently defunct MN-98.

Improvements: Paved in its entirety by 1940, though the short MN-98 segment was not constructed until after WWII. U.S. 8 and MN-98 were flip-flopped in the late 1950s. No expressway segments except for the first half mile coming off I-35.

Comments: If any highway needs drastic improvement, this is it. Between the commuter traffic from Lindstrom and Center City to the Twin Cities, and the weekend exodus from the Twin Cities to Wisconsin, this road carries far more traffic than it is capable. MnDOT is using its paltry funding to make safety spot improvements, but what is really needed is an expressway with bypasses of the towns along the way. That probably won't happen until Minnesota gets serious about highway funding, and nothing is in the 10-year plan through 2013.

MN-9 This route has two distinct segments, connected by U.S. 75.

N/S Section - South terminus: U.S. 75 N of Wahpeton
North terminus
: U.S. 2 E of Crookston

Counties: Wilkin, Clay, Norman, Polk

E/W Section - West terminus: U.S. 75 at Doran (the original terminus of this route)
East terminus
MN-23 at New London
Previously --- U.S. 12 at Benson (1934-63)

Counties: Wilkin, Grant, Stevens, Pope, Swift, Kandiyohi

Length (total): 226 Regions: WC, NW

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 211, 179, 6 (N/S) and 152, 10, 210 (E/W)

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Northern segment originally East segment originally

Two Constitutional Route segments. Between MN-200 and U.S. 2, the original alignment of U.S. 75; and between MN-27 and U.S. 12. Other segments authorized 1933. Segment north of Breckenridge designated MN-82 until late 1950s. From U.S. 12 to an old alignment of U.S. 71 at New London was originally designated MN-23 until around 1940, then called MN-17 until 1963.

Improvements: Last segment to be paved was the old MN-82 segment north of Breckenridge, which was paved by 1961.

Comments: Joined together from three distinctly separate segments.

U.S. 10N

U.S. 10S

West terminus: U.S. 10 at Moorhead
East terminus
: U.S. 10 at St. Cloud

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s):
U.S. 10N
2, 37, 27
U.S. 10S

History: U.S. 10N now

U.S. 10S now

From 1926, when U.S. routes were first laid out, until the mid-1930s, U.S. 52 did not exist. U.S. 10 was originally split into N- and S-legs between Moorhead and St. Cloud. U.S. 10S originally followed what later became U.S. 52, while U.S. 10N followed what later became just U.S. 10. However, the original 1934 numbering plan --- never marked --- was to replace U.S. 10S with U.S. 10 and U.S. 10N with U.S. 218.

U.S. 10N sign from the collection of Robert Edgar, Bakersfield CA.

* U.S. 10S followed a county road segment from near Fergus Falls to Evansville that became L.R. 153 in 1934 when U.S. 52 was marked along former U.S. 10S.

 U.S. 10

West terminus: ND State Line (U.S. 10) at Moorhead
Nationally ---
I-94 at West Fargo ND
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 10) at Prescott WI
Nationally --- I-75 at Bay City MI (after crossing L. Michigan via ferry)

Length (MN): 270 Regions: WC, EC, M

Counties: Clay, Becker, Otter Tail, Wadena, Todd, Morrison, Benton, Sherburne, Anoka, Ramsey, Washington

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 2, 37, 27, 3, 62, 94

How numbered: U.S. Route

NHS: From ND State Line to MN-24 east of St. Cloud, and U.S. 169 to I-35W

History: Easternmost segment (E. of U.S. 61) originally (1934-35) designated
Segment from Moorhead to St. Cloud originally (1926-34)

U.S. 10 is an original U.S. route, although the segment east of the Twin Cities was originally duplexed with U.S. 12 until 1933. Only non-Constitutional Route segment is east of U.S. 61 to the Wisconsin border, authorized in 1933. This segment was originally designated MN-94 in 1934-35, and U.S. 10 was marked on this route by 1935. Between Moorhead and St. Cloud, was originally designated U.S. 10N until 1933. West of Minneapolis, this route followed Constitutional Route 3 (later U.S. 52) to Anoka rather than Constitutional Route 63, the alignment by 1934. This new alignment was along Main Street and Coon Rapids Blvd. through Anoka County, bypassed by freeway around 1970, southeast on "Anoka Cutoff" to Snelling Avenue, east on County Road E and down Lexington and Como Avenues into downtown St. Paul. When I-694 and I-35E were completed in the late 1960s, 10 was duplexed with these routes.

Improvements: Paved between Twin Cities and St. Cloud as early as 1929. Remainder of route was paved by 1950. Divided highway section between Anoka and Elk River by 1942. Freeway through northwest Twin Cities suburbs from I-35W through Anoka; between University Avenue and Anoka completed mid 1970s, and completed in 1999 between I-35W and the south junction with TH-47. Divided highway along most of its length through the state, posted 65 mph along much of the way, except for 2-lane or undivided 4-lane stretches through Wadena, Staples and Motley. Some 60 mph divided segments between Elk River and Anoka.

Future Improvements: The major project planned for this route is "access management" through Detroit Lakes. Currently, the route bypasses the immediate downtown area, and this may be to provide interchanges and remove as many signals as possible without actually bypassing the city. Originally planned for 2008-10, but moved up to 2007.

Comments: U.S. 10 is a route that has a mere vestige of its former significance. On the west, it formerly ran to Seattle, Washington, but was replaced by I-94 and I-90 west of Fargo. On the east, it still runs across Wisconsin to a ferry connection across Lake Michigan, but is one of several east-west cross-state routes. In Michigan, it was significantly shortened (having originally terminated in Detroit) after completion of I-75. It is therefore a route of only regional rather than national importance.

Visit Adam Froehlig's exit list for Highway 10.


West terminus: ND State Line (ND-66) at Robbin
East terminus
: Island View east of Intl. Falls

Length: 208 Regions: NW, NE

Counties: Kittson, Roseau, Lake of the Woods, Koochiching

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 172, 11, 158

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 11; remainder numbered for continuity of route.

History: Constitutional Route between U.S. 75 and International Falls. West and easternmost segments authorized 1933.

Improvements: Sections were a primitive road in 1929. Last section to be paved was the segment between the ND State Line and U.S. 75 at Donaldson; this was paved by 1961. No divided segments.

Comments: There is no numbering relationship between this route and Ontario 11. The Minnesota route has had this designation since 1920, and originally the route along the north side of the Rainy River in Ontario from Rainy River to Fort Frances was designated Ontario 71 (as an extension of U.S. 71). Then, route 11 was constructed from west of Thunder Bay westward to Fort Frances, and former route 71 was redesignated route 11 west of Fort Frances for route continuity. So, it's just a coincidence that there are two routes 11 running parallel on both sides of the border. In fact, they don't meet; it's MN-72 that crosses the border at Baudette.

Robb Tucker of Cocoa Beach, FL, provided this photo of the east end of MN-11 where it enters the Sha-Sha Resort at Island View.
Between Warroad and Baudette, part of MOM'S way...a route being promoted as an alternative to the Trans Canada Highway between Winnipeg and Thunder Bay. The route follows Manitoba 12 southeast from Winnipeg to the border, MN-313 (a short piece not given any fanfare in the organization's information) to Warroad, MN-11 to Baudette, and Ontario 11 from Rainy River east to Thunder Bay. There is a short piece of MN-72 in there too. Click the logo at left for more information.

U.S. 12









West terminus: SD State Line (U.S. 12) W of Ortonville
Nationally --- U.S. 101 at Aberdeen WA
East terminus
: WI State Line
(U.S. 12) at Lakeland (along I-94). Independently marked section ends at junction with I-494 in Minnetonka.
Nationally --- MI-10 at Detroit MI

Length (MN): 192 Regions: WC, EC, M

Counties: Big Stone, Swift, Kandiyohi, Meeker, Wright, Hennepin, Ramsey, Washington

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 149, 26, 10

How numbered: U.S. route

NHS: SD State Line to U.S. 75 (Ortonville), U.S. 71 (Willmar) to I-494/394

History: U.S. 12 is an original U.S. route. Short segment west of U.S. 75 is not a Constitutional Route, thus U.S. 12 may have been routed along a county road here until 1933. Follows its original alignment.

Improvements: In 1929, only the segments between Willmar and Litchfield and between Wayzata through the Twin Cities to Wisconsin were paved. By 1940, the entire route was paved. Freeway bypasses Wayzata and joins I-394. Otherwise, the rest of U.S. 12 is mostly 2-lane across Minnesota.

Future Improvements: Beginning in 2006, a bypass of Long Lake will be constructed. This will be a super-2 on a new alignment beginning where the current freeway ends on the west side of Wayzata.

Comments: Duplexed with I-394 and I-94 east of I-494. Not marked along this section except where I-394 intersects I-94.

West of the Twin Cities, U.S. 12 is an independent route that is generally routed far from interstates and duplexed with interstates for only short distances all the way to the Washington coast. It wouldn't be my choice to go to South Dakota, but it meets all the criteria for a U.S. route. East of the Twin Cities, however, U.S. 12 often closely parallels interstates, and is really only a route of local or regional importance east to its terminus at Detroit.

Visit Adam Froehlig's exit list for Highway 12 in the metro area (Wayzata to I-494).


South terminus: U.S. 65 at Albert Lea
North terminus
MN-149 in St. Paul
Previously --- Iowa state line south of Albert Lea (1934-35)

Length: 114 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Freeborn, Waseca, Le Sueur, Scott, Dakota, Ramsey

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9, 13, 117, 194

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 13; remainder so numbered for route continuity.

NHS: Segment including unnumbered spur (old MN-101) to U.S. 169, east to Cliff Road. NHS designation extends east along Cliff Road (CSAH 32) to I-35E.

History: Original southern end now

Constitutional Route between Albert Lea and New Prague, where MN-21 continues as Constitutional Route 13. Other segments authorized 1933, when the entire route assumed its current numbering. Extended south of Albert Lea to Iowa border in 1934, but this segment became U.S. 69 in 1935.

Improvements: The entire route was paved by 1940. Between New Prague and Burnsville, ran along current CSAH 27 and took a somewhat more direct path than today. Current alignment with 90 degree turn at old MN-101 opened around 1968. Divided highway between old MN-101 in Savage and north of MN-77 in Burnsville, then again from I-494 (no interchange) to MN-55. This latter segment was rerouted in 1993 over a new, circuitous connecting road as part of the Mendota Bridge reconstruction.

Comment: With the sharp turns in this route, it should be renumbered. Example: extend 13 over 21 to 169; new 213 from 19 to Savage; new 131 from U.S. 169 (old 101) to the east. This is a turnback candidate from 55 to 149.

U.S. 14


From: SD State Line (U.S. 14) W of Lake Benton
Nationally --- Yellowstone N.P., WY
: WI State Line
(U.S. 14) at La Crescent (with U.S. 61)
Previously --- U.S. 61 at Winona (1926-33)
Nationally --- U.S. 41 at Chicago IL

Length (MN): 290 Regions: SW, SE

Counties: Lincoln, Lyon, Redwood, Brown, Nicollet, Blue Earth, Waseca, Steele, Dodge, Olmsted, Winona

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 7, 122, 7

How numbered: U.S. Route

NHS: SD State Line to U.S. 52 (Rochester)

History: U.S. 14 is an original U.S. highway as far as Winona, and was extended east into Wisconsin in 1933. The only non-Constitutional Route segment is between Nicollet and Mankato; however, this segment was marked U.S. 14/MN-7 as early as 1927 even though Constitutional Route 7 must go through St. Peter. The state must have routed Constitutional Route 5 from St. Peter to Nicollet and then southeast to Mankato, and numbered the roads differently from their Constitutional Route designations (MN-21 from Nicollet to St. Peter, though the west end of Constitutional Route 21 is St. Peter).

Improvements: All gravel in 1929. By 1940, only the segment between Nicollet and Mankato was gravel, presumably paved shortly thereafter. Freeway segment through Mankato, with freeway/expressway extending to the east as far as the Blue Earth County line. This segment is under construction further east to Waseca. Also, there are expressway segments that bypass Owatonna and from west of Dodge Center to Rochester.

Future Improvements: Expressway to be constructed from Owatonna to Waseca, including a new southerly interchange at I-35 that will connect with a realigned U.S. 14 west of Owatonna. This will be built beginning in 2008.

Comments: Concurrent segment with U.S. 61 southeast of Winona to WI State Line. There is a U.S. 14 business route (not a trunk highway) marked through Dodge Center


South terminus: Iowa State Line (IA-15) S of Fairmont
North terminus
: U.S. 10 at Sauk Rapids
Previously --- U.S. 52 at St. Cloud (1934-80)

Length: 164 Regions: SW, WC

Counties: Martin, Watonwan, Brown, Nicollet, Sibley, McLeod, Meeker, Stearns, Benton

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 15, 151, 24, 239

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 15; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: Constitutional Route from Iowa line to U.S. 14 and from MN-24 south of Kimball to St. Cloud. Middle segment authorized 1933, northernmost segment in 1950. This northerly segment was originally part of MN-152 and was routed through downtown St. Cloud. Now, it bypasses central St. Cloud to the west.

Improvements: By 1940, only two short gravel sections remained, both paved by 1953. Currently, divided highway around St. Cloud from I-94 to U.S. 10 (few signals, and much of it is posted 60 mph).

Comments: I would extend this route north over U.S. 10 for 27 miles to Little Falls and connect it with MN-371. The combined route should have a single identity, which I would recommend to be MN-15. It doesn't connect to anything of consequence in Iowa that would warrant a U.S. highway designation (such as reviving the old U.S. 371 designation, which has been reused elsewhere anyway).

U.S. 16 West terminus: SD State Line near Sioux Falls
East terminus
: Wisconsin State Line at LaCrosse

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9, (80), 9

How numbered: Part of U.S. 16

History: Mostly replaced by Eastern end now

An original U.S. route. Decommissioned by 1980 when I-90 completed. Replaced by I-90 except for the segment --- now called MN-16 --- east of Austin. The original alignment until the 1940s included the segment between Wykoff and Fountain now designated MN-80. For a time after completion of I-90 near the South Dakota line, U.S. 16 was maintained as an independent route west of Luverne, later designated MN-17, now county road.

See MN-16 for other details of remaining non-interstate portion.

MN-16 West terminus: I-90 E of Austin
East terminus
: Wisconsin State Line
(WI-16) at La Crescent (with U.S. 14/61)

Length: 88 Region: SE

Counties: Mower, Fillmore, Houston

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9, 80, 9

How numbered: Formerly U.S. 16. MN-16 is the only segment of this former route that exists as a trunk highway separate from I-90.

History: Originally part of

Constitutional Route except for segment between Wycoff and U.S. 52 west of Preston. Originally routed along current MN-80 until a direct bypass of this route was constructed in the 1940s, and then the designations of these two routes were reversed.

Improvements: All 2-lane today. The last unpaved segment was the L.R. 80 segment, paved by 1953.

Comments: One of the most scenic routes in Minnesota, especially the segment between Preston and Houston. Overlaid, like its U.S. predecessor, on U.S. 14/61 for the last mile into Wisconsin, where WI-16 is similarly co-numbered with these U.S. routes. I don't see the value of continuing this designation into Wisconsin.

Original MN-17

South terminus: U.S. 59 at Marshall
North terminus
: U.S. 71 at Willmar

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 17, 146, 49

How numbered: Portion numbered same as Constitutional Route designation, remainder numbered for continuity

History: now part of

In 1933 renumbering, Trunk Highway 17 designation was extended north from Granite Falls over new L.R. 146 and former Constitutional Route 49 to Willmar. By 1940, Trunk Highway 23 was extended south along former trunk highways 17 and 39 to U.S. 16. The trunk highway 17 designation was immediately recycled on the former T.H. 23 segment west of the end of this route.

  Second MN-17



West terminus: U.S. 12 at Benson
East terminus: U.S. 71 at New London

Legislative Route(s): 210

How numbered: The T.H. 17 designation was probably used because the realigned T.H. 23 occupied the former T.H. 17 from Willmar south.

History: Originally part of Now designated

Around 1940, the southwest end of T.H. 23, which had formerly gone from New London west to Benson, was realigned south along former T.H. 17 and 39. The former T.H. 23 segment west of New London became T.H. 17, and kept this designation until it was renumbered T.H. 9 around 1963.

MN-17 West terminus: I-90 at Beaver Creek
East terminus
: U.S. 75 at Luverne

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 9

How numbered: Arbitrary designation, or maybe the closest available number to 16

History: Originally part of

When I-90 was completed around 1975, old U.S. 16 was maintained as a trunk highway for about five years west of Luverne. Probably MnDOT felt it had to maintain Constitutional Route 9 through Luverne as per the definition of this route. Now designated CSAH 4.

MN-18 West terminus: MN-210 east of Brainerd
Previously ---
MN-210 in downtown Brainerd (until 2001)
East terminus
I-35 E of Finlayson
Previously --- MN-56 (now
47) at Malmo (1934-63)

Length: 84 Region: EC

Counties: Crow Wing, Aitkin, Pine

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 18, 157, 186

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 18; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: East of Lake Mille Lacs originally designated

Constitutional Route between Brainerd and U.S. 169 at Garrison. Remaining route authorized 1933. Designation ended at current junction of MN-27 and MN-47 (then MN-56) until mid 1950s. The current segment of MN-18 between MN-47 and MN-65 was then designated MN-27, and the current segment between MN-65 and MN-23 north of Sandstone was first designated MN-66.

Improvements: By 1940, the only paved section was Brainerd to Garrison. The last unpaved segment was east of MN-47 to MN-65, paved in the late 1960s. The westernmost part of this route (west of TH-25 in Brainerd) was turned back to the city of Brainerd in 2001 after completion of the TH-371 Brainerd bypass.

MN-19 West terminus: SD State Line (SD-30) W of Ivanhoe
East terminus
: U.S. 61 near Red Wing

Length: 198 Regions: SW, SE

Counties: Lincoln, Lyon, Redwood, Renville, Sibley, Scott/Le Sueur, Rice, (Dakota), Goodhue

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 90, 14, 100

How numbered: Arbitrary assignment

History: Constitutional Route between U.S. 75 and MN-15, west and east segments authorized 1933.

Improvements: Last segment to be paved was in the mid-1950s, east of New Prague. No divided segments. Interchange completed around 2002 at the very dangerous intersection with U.S. 169.

Comments: Route essentially crosses the state, ending at Red Wing about five miles west of the bridge to Wisconsin.

MN-20 West terminus: MN-19 at Cannon Falls
East terminus
: U.S. 61 near Miesville

Length: 6 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Goodhue, Dakota

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 20

How numbered: Constitutional route number

History: This is the only segment of Constitutional Route 20 that was not part of a U.S. route.

Improvements: Paved by 1940.

Comments: Currently, there are no signs at the exit from U.S. 52 at Cannon Falls that indicate the short connection via MN-19 to MN-20, though at the end of the offramps the connection is indicated.

MN-21 South terminus: MN-60 at Faribault
North terminus
: U.S. 169 at Jordan

Length: 38 Regions: SE, M

Counties: Rice, Le Sueur, Scott

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 1, 21, 13

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 21; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: All part of Constitutional Routes. Northernmost part (New Prague to Jordan) was redesignated as MN-21 in 1934.

Improvements: Paved north of MN-19 by 1940, rest of route by after WWII. Southernmost part through Faribault is second-generation former U.S. 65, constructed in the late 1950s, which was connected to a divided highway coming off I-35 in the 1960s.

MN-22 South terminus: Iowa State Line (county road) S of Kiester
North terminus
MN-23 at Richmond
Previously ---
MN-55 at Eden Valley (1934-61)

Length: 166 Regions: SE, SW, WC

Counties: Faribault, Blue Earth, Le Sueur, Nicollet, Sibley, McLeod, Meeker, Stearns

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 87, 39, 5, 22, 321

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 22; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: Mankato to St. Peter follows original route of

Three different Constitutional Routes segments between I-90 and MN-55. Southernmost segment added 1933, northermost segment added around 1960. The portion of this route between Mankato and St. Peter was the original alignment of U.S. 169. When the parallel route west of the Minnesota River was first completed in the late 1950s, it originally carried the MN-22 designation for a few years until it was redesignated U.S. 169 and MN-22 reverted to its original alignment.

Improvements: Paved in its entirety by 1953. The segment southeast of Mankato to U.S. 14 constructed around 1990. A connection between this interchange and the current alignment north of Mankato is planned.

MN-23 South(west) terminus: I-90 near SD State Line, W of Beaver Creek
Previously --- U.S. 12 at Benson (1934-40)
North(east) terminus
I-35 at Duluth
Previously --- U.S. 2/61 at Duluth (1934-63), U.S./
MN-61 E of Duluth (1963-97)

Length: 340 Regions: SW, WC, EC, NE

Counties: Rock, Pipestone, Lincoln, Lyon, Yellow Medicine, Chippewa, (Renville), Kandiyohi, Stearns, Benton, Mille Lacs, Kanabec, Pine, Carlton, St. Louis

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 88, 17, 146, 49, 23, 1, 186, 185

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 23; remainder numbered for route continuity.

NHS: From I-90 near the SD border to I-35 near Hinckley

History: Part of current route originally Part of original route now

Constitutional Route segments between Marshall and Hinckley. Remainder authorized 1933. Originally designated MN-39 from its south terminus to Marshall, and MN-17 from Marshall to Willmar until around 1940. The MN-23 designation originally extended west from New London to Benson along current MN-9 (which was also MN-17 from around 1940 to the 1960s.) Originally ran through Sandstone along route that later became MN-123 to just west of Askov; redesignated around 1946. After completion of I-35, the state maintained MN-23 (as an extension of Constitutional Route 1) through Hinckley and Sandstone. The portion through Sandstone was shown on the 1997-98 Minnesota Highway map as being turned back but is shown as a trunk highway on the 1999-2000 map, as is TH-123. (May be a mandatory segment of Constitutional Route 1 if I-35 does not go through Sandstone). Formerly ran through Duluth (L.R. 281, originally marked MN-281 1950-63) along Michigan/1st and Superior/3rd Sts to MN-61; this section turned back in 1997.

Improvements: Original alignment from U.S. 16 to Jasper was along CSAH 9; new alignment built around 1940. Various segments paved from 30s through 50s, entire route was paved by 1961. Bypass of Willmar opened around 1987, second carriageway of this opened around 2002. Expressway from New London to Spicer now open, as well as from Cold Spring to Waite Park (St. Cloud). Posted 60 mph except for urban segments from its southern terminus to Willmar.

Future Construction: A bypass of Paynesville is programmed for 2013. Four-laning this route from MN-95 to MN-25 is programmed for 2008.

Comments: Runs diagonally across the state from southwest to northeast. A short (< 1 mile) portion runs through Wisconsin but is maintained by MnDOT under agreement between the two states. See Chris Bessert's Wisconsin Highways page for a comment on this short Wisconsin segment.

MN-24 South(west) terminus: U.S. 12 at Litchfield
North(east) terminus
: U.S. 10 at Clear Lake
Previously ---
MN-15 S of Kimball (1934-63)

Length: 47 Regions: WC, EC

Counties: Meeker, Stearns, Wright, Sherburne

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 24, 240

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 24; remainder numbered for route continuity.

NHS: The connection between I-94 and U.S. 10

History: Eastern segment originally

Constitutional Route between Litchfield and MN-15. (Constitutional Route 24 designation continues to St. Cloud along MN-15). Other segment from MN-55 to U.S. 10 added around 1950, originally designated MN-240 like its L.R. number until 1963.

Future Construction: Not yet programmed, but the connection between I-94 and U.S. 10 south of St. Cloud will likely be a freeway-type connection.

Improvements: Gravel before WWII, all paved by 1953.

MN-25 South terminus: U.S. 169 near Belle Plaine
North terminus
MN-210 just east of downtown Brainerd
Previously --- U.S. 10 at Big Lake (1934-63), and Merrifield (N of Brainerd) (1963-2001)

Length: 167 Regions: M, SE, EC, NE

Counties: Scott, Sibley, Carver, Wright, Sherburne, Benton, Morrison, Crow Wing

Constitutional/Legislative Route(s): 25, 209, 305, 233

How numbered: Part of route is Constitutional Route 25; remainder numbered for route continuity.

History: Northern segment originally

Constitutional Route between Belle Plaine and Big Lake. Segment between U.S. 10 and Brainerd authorized 1933 and originally designated MN-218. Short segment between MN-18 and MN-210 in Brainerd authorized around 1960, north of Brainerd in 1950. MN-218 redesignated as MN-25 in 1963. The northernmost segment between TH-210 and Merrifield was turned back to Crow Wing County in 2001, and L.R. 305 and 233 were eliminated.

Improvements: Paved south of U.S. 212 by 1940, remainder south of U.S. 10 by 1953. Former MN-218 north of U.S. 10 paved by 1961. No divided segments along route.

Future Improvements: Four-lanes planned from MN-55 at Buffalo to Monticello, programmed for 2009.

Comment: Several sharp turns make this a somewhat questionable single route. One logical shortcut would be Sherburne County 11 to bypass Big Lake to the north, but since Big Lake is listed in the Constitutional Route description, that would require another legislative route to be established.

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  Last updated November 24, 2006