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      Results Minnesota: Minnesota Mobility

      Posted on December 19, 2012 at 8:40 AM

      Pictured: iPhone Autism App Emergency Scale Screenshot Pictured: An additional photo of the iPhone Autism App

      The Autism Help App assists individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and other disabilities to communicate and regulate in emergency situations. 

      Two years into his administration, Governor Mark Dayton is making important progress toward building a Better Minnesota by working to provide sustainable options to safely move people, goods, services, and information.

      The success of Minnesota’s economy depends on a transportation system that safely and efficiently gets people and goods where they need to be. Our roadways, bridges, and rail systems are continuously improving thanks to Governor Dayton’s strong leadership.  In addition to strong physical infrastructure, Minnesota citizens and businesses need affordable access to the high-tech infrastructure that drives our global economy, including high-speed internet in every corner of our state.

      In the Spotlight

      The Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities (DDC) at the Minnesota Department of Administration has developed a free award winning mobile device application that helps individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) communicate in emergency situations.

      Using a proven 5-point, color-coded scale, the Application can be customized for an individual or family.  In an emergency situation, a parent’s calming voice can explain what to do.  For example, in the case of a fire, the App shows a picture of a safe meeting place and the parent’s voice instructs the individual to go there.  The 5-Point Scale was created by Kari Dunn Buron and Mitzi Beth Curtis of Hamline University, which is a nationally known and accepted system, widely used in public schools.

      This mobile tool is designed to be simple and user friendly.  To date, more than 16,300 people have downloaded this App.

      Delivering Results

      • Expanding Light Rail Transit – Worked to ensure Central Corridor LRT service will begin in 2014, providing jobs for 4,300 construction workers. Secured additional funding for Southwest Corridor development.

      • Reducing Commuter Delays – Provided 94 million transit rides per year, reducing commuter delays by 6 million hours, saving $140 million in congestion costs, and reducing fuel consumption by 6 million gallons.

      • Providing Convenient, Affordable Transit for Disabled Minnesotans – Reached 1.5 million rides per year for Metro Mobility, a 9.6% increase.

      • Making Roads More Durable – Invested $357 million in a 4-year project to restore 700 miles of highway surface, employing 3,400 workers; 2012 saw the biggest pavement restoration program in Minnesota history.

      • Stabilizing Funding for Roads, Bridges, and Transit – Convened a panel of experts to explore new options for funding Minnesota’s aging transportation infrastructure; recommendations under consideration.

      • Rebuilding the Hastings Bridge – Floated a new bridge downstream on a barge and successfully lifted it into position above the Mississippi River.

      • Building a Bridge Safely and Quickly – Used new strategies to build and move two 1,300 ton bridge spans over I35E at Maryland Ave., reducing road closures by two months and creating a safer work zone for motorists.

      • Removing Stoplights and Reducing Congestion – Completed construction on Hwy 169/I-494 interchange, significantly reducing congestion and saving $35 million by using six ramps instead of eight.

      • Building Public-Private Partnerships to Fund Crucial Projects – Leveraged $103 million in private investment to fund 14 road projects statewide, including a new interchange on Hwy 10 in Perham that will boost local businesses and create 240 jobs. 

      • Improving the Speed and Reliability of Internet Service – Convened a Broadband Task Force to develop a plan for border-to-border broadband.