Buckle up for 3 years of I-35W construction

It’s been a long time in the making and now the work is finally here — for the next three years the Minnesota Department of Transportation will be adding lanes to Interstate 35W from Roseville to Blaine.

Work on the estimated $208 million project officially began March 31.

“[MnDOT] is advising motorists to prepare for upcoming lane closures, ramp closures and travel delays,” the state department said in a March 26 release. “The ambitious three-year project will construct MnPASS Express Lanes, repave I-35W and ramps between the Interstate and local roads and repair bridges.”

The work area runs from County Road C in Roseville north to Sunset Avenue on the border of Lino Lakes and Blaine. 

A single MnPASS lane will be added in each direction to the center of the interstate from County Road C to Lexington Avenue in Blaine.

Additionally, crews will replace the I-35W bridges over County Road C and County Road I.

MnDOT said the initial work now through April 7 will include overnight lane closures from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. on northbound I-35W between County Road E2 and Interstate 694, and in both directions from the southern Highway 10 interchange to County Road J. 

Crews will be paving areas needed for planned traffic shifts.

As of Monday, April 8, MnDOT said long-term lane closures will begin on the northbound side of the interstate from Roseville to the Mounds View/Arden Hills area. The roadway will be reduced to two lanes from County Road C to Mounds View Boulevard, and three lanes north from the boulevard to the northern Highway 10 interchange.

Come late April or early May, from the northern bound of the project area south to the northern Highway 10 interchange, all traffic will be moved to the east side of the interstate; I-35W will have two lanes in both directions in the area.

Come mid- to late-May, the rest of the project area, all the way down to County Road C, will have traffic shifted to the east side of the interstate. There will be two lanes between County Road C and Mounds View Boulevard and three lanes from the boulevard to the northern Highway 10 interchange.

Lane closures for both directions of traffic are planned to be in place through November as crews reconstruct the southbound side of the interstate.

Ramp closures in the project area are also planned from May through November. Information about the closures and more can be found on the project’s website at www.dot.state.mn.us/metro/projects/35wnorthmnpass.

MnDOT said the lane additions and related work should be complete by fall 2021, extending the life of the interstate while providing long-term travel options through the corridor. 

 

Mike Munzenrider

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