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Federal judge says new St. Croix River bridge will proceed

A federal judge said he would not stop preliminary work on the new Saint Croix River bridge near Hudson because of a bidding dispute in Minnesota. C-S McCrossan is challenging the state's rejection a contract to do approach work for the new bridge - and it filed suit in both federal-and-state courts. Yesterday, Federal Judge Richard Kyle said he would put McCrossan's suit on hold until the case is finished in the state courts. Minnesota officials said McCrossan did not adequately promise it would use enough sub-contractors from minority and female-owned companies. McCrossan disagreed. The Saint Croix bridge work is also being delayed for environmental reasons. Dead invasive zebra mussels were found on six of eight barges that were going to be used to ship building materials to the construction site. The barges never got to the river, and the involved contractor says it will de-contaminate all 100 of its barges for the project before doing anything else. The new bridge is still scheduled to open in 2016, providing four-lane access over the Saint Croix north of Hudson and south of Stillwater Minnesota.