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Road construction is impacting downtown employers, commuters and residents. Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) has several highway construction projects surrounding downtown scheduled for 2018.
The I-94 resurfacing project started last year and is scheduled for completion by the end of summer 2018. I-35W, from Roseville to University Avenue, will be resurfaced over the summer months with six weekend highway closures scheduled starting in mid-July 2018. These projects, however, are just speed-bumps when compared to the massive, four-year 35W@94 Downtown to Crosstown rebuild project taking place just south of downtown. This busy section of I-35W carries over 150,000 vehicles daily from the South Metro, including thousands of downtown commuters. Lane, ramp and bridge closures are already impacting traffic as the project continues to ramp up. The full weight of construction begins in the late spring and will continue in stages until late 2021.
Finishing the I-94 Resurfacing from Brooklyn Park to downtown Minneapolis Timeline – Now through July 2018:
I-35W Resurfacing from Roseville to University Avenue in NE Minneapolis Timeline – Six weekend highway closures from mid-July – August, 2018
35W@94 Project – Downtown to Crosstown Timeline – Now – 2021 (4 year project)
As the I-94 and I-35W resurfacing projects finish up, the 35W@94 project will intensify during the summer of 2018. Many freeway entrance and exit ramps will be temporarily closed during the various stages of construction. The Franklin Avenue bridge and 38th Street bridge decks are currently being replaced. The five-stage project will continue until 2021.
A new transit station built into the bridge over West Lake Street will link buses onto an express lane into downtown. The transit station will be part of the Orange BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) Line.
4th St. Reconstruction: 2nd Ave. N. to 4th Ave. S.
Timeline – Summer 2018 – 2019
While the Nicollet Mall and Washington Avenue projects are now completed in downtown, more road construction projects are planned for the heart of the city. Two one-way streets going south through central downtown and next on the list. Construction of the 0.6-mile 4th Street South project is scheduled to begin in mid-2018 and consists of improvements to the roadway, sidewalk, and utilities. The plan includes a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line and safer pedestrian access. The 8th Street rebuild is slated to start utility work at the end of 2018 with major construction scheduled throughout 2019.
On the horizon, the Hennepin Avenue rebuild project is in the design stage at this point with construction slated for 2020.