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MnDOT sees $7 million benefit from Adopt a Highway volunteers in 2018


Additional volunteers sought in northwestern Minnesota

PAUL, Minn. – Volunteers helping with the Adopt a Highway program picked up nearly 36,000 bags of litter and cleaned up almost 9,000 miles of state roadways in 2018, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation.

More than 3,500 volunteer groups, ranging from four to 25 people, spent an estimated 282,000 hours cleaning roadway ditches across Minnesota last year, which translated into an estimated $7 million benefit for the state.

“When our volunteers are picking up litter along the roadways it shows that Minnesotans care about their state and it is a win-win for all involved,” said Ann McLellan, statewide Adopt a Highway manager.

The program has been part of MnDOT’s maintenance operations since 1990. More than 4,400 segments of state roadways are currently adopted in Minnesota by volunteers representing schools, businesses, faith-based groups, families and individuals.

In northwest Minnesota, there are about 300 sections available. “Most of the sections are two miles each, so we are seeking volunteers for about 600 miles of highway,” said Becky Bahr, MnDOT district 2 Adopt a Highway co-coordinator. “Some of the areas with multiple sections available include Bagley, Birchdale, Margie, Northome, Waskish, and Zerkel, but really, we have availabilities all across northwestern Minnesota.”

Interested volunteers should contact the following to check availability:

Statewide, individuals and groups who want to volunteer can also go to www.mndot.gov/adopt to find their local area program coordinator. MnDOT provides safety training, trash bags and safety vests, and picks up the filled bags that volunteers leave at the side of the road. MnDOT also posts signs along the adopted segments of roads with the names of the volunteer groups.

Volunteers are asked to commit to the program for at least two years and pick up litter on both sides of the roadway at least twice a year. The average length of an adopted roadway is two miles.

Last modified: 04/17/2019

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