Numerous regional projects were included Wednesday in Gov. Mark Dayton’s $986 million bonding bill, which is subject to review by the Minnesota Legislature.
Dayton recommended the following projects.
• $4.9 million to build a new event center to replace the existing chalet at Giants Ridge. The event center would be a multi-use, year-round attraction intended to support area tourism and local residents. IRRRB funds would be used to match state general obligation bond funds
• $5 million to the Chisholm/Hibbing Airport Authority to demolish the existing terminal and to construct a new passenger terminal and boarding bridge, and associated equipment at the Range Regional Airport. Total project cost is estimated at $10.1 million.
• $6.9 million for a grant to the Duluth Economic Development Authority for renovations to the NorShor Arts Center. The state bond proceeds would be used to facilitate skywalk and handicapped accessibility and provide public access to the newly renovated NorShor Arts Center. The total project cost is $22.3 million.
• $2 million for a grant to the International Falls–Koochiching County Airport Commission to be used as the local match to federal funds to construct a new airline terminal facility located in International Falls. The total project cost is $11.3 million.
• A $1.2 million grant to the Town of Rice Lake to construct and replace a water main. The total project cost is estimated at $2.467 million
• $3.4 million to purchase land and construct a water system that will deliver water to the Spirit Mountain ski facility for snowmaking purposes. The total project cost is estimated at $4.5 million
• $2 million for a grant to St. Louis County for predesign of a new office building. It will house the Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency and Range Mental Health. The total project cost is estimated at $20 million.
• $1.5 million for a grant to the city of Virginia for extending infrastructure and improving the storm water system at the Northern Heights Industrial Park. The total project cost is estimated at $3.05 million
• $3.344 million for the Northeast Higher Education District to design, renovate, furnish, and equip space to meet various workforce training needs. This project impacts a total of 18 classroom/lab spaces onthe Itasca, Hibbing, Rainy River and Vermilion campuses. In addition to the renovations, obsolete space will be demolished on the Hibbing campus.
Dayton said the spending will create 27,000 jobs.
“My proposals will put thousands of Minnesotans to work throughout our state,” he said in a news release. “This bill gives priority to projects that are ready to go. Many of them have been delayed for years and are crucial to revitalizing downtown business centers, modernizing MnSCU and U of M buildings and classrooms, and improving parks, roads, and local infrastructure.”