Shady Oak Road (County Road 61) serves as a primary access point to Eden Prairie’s Golden Triangle Area (GTA) and City West business parks. This project includes widening and reconstruction of Shady Oak Road from the intersection of Flying Cloud Drive to approximately 800 feet north of Rowland Road and also replacement and expansion of the existing Shady Oak Road bridge over Hwy 212. The project adds turn lanes, a median, and trails along Shady Oak Road and will provide significant operational and safety benefits along the corridor.
Shady Oak Road and the Hwy 212 / Shady Oak Road interchange is one of only four access points for the 20,000 plus employees that work in the GTA (area bounded by Hwy 212, Hwy 169 and I-494) and City West business parks. Due to this heavy daily commuter demand and the insufficient capacity of the existing interchange, significant delays are often experienced during peak travel periods. The improvements to Shady Oak Road and the Hwy 212 / Shady Oak Road interchange will provide improved operations for existing employees in the area and the significant planned growth in area employment. The project will also help Shady Oak Road serve its function as an alternative route for the congested I-494 and Hwy 169 corridors. The project also provides a multi-modal function, including multi-use trails on both sides of the Shady Oak Road corridor. The project will also provide improved access to the proposed Golden Triangle and City West Southwest LRT stations and potential park and ride facilities.
Economic Development Impacts
The Hwy 212 / Shady Oak Road interchange is currently one of only four major access points serving the entire Golden Triangle Area (GTA) and has insufficient capacity to accommodate the growth and economic development expected to occur in the area. This project will serve two large business parks in the immediate vicinity: The GTA and City West Business Park. The GTA is widely recognized as one of Minnesota’s largest and most diverse business parks and when combined with the City West area supports over 20,000 jobs, nearly 600 businesses, 900 acres of land area, and 10 million square feet of office, industrial, and commercial uses. It is also headquarters to some of the largest and most recognized companies in Minnesota including Supervalu, Minnesota Vikings, Shop NBC, Starkey, Dell, Lifetouch, and CIGNA. With its strategic location within the I-494 ring and good proximity to the international airport, demand for investment and redevelopment of the area remains high. The City anticipates significant growth in jobs in the area through expansion of existing businesses as well as through new development and redevelopment.
One project alone - United Health Group’s recently approved plan to add 1.5 million square feet of office space and 6,700 jobs in the City West area - will generate enough traffic demand to justify the complete reconstruction of the interchange.