Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

August 9, 2018

I-35 traffic switch and long-term southbound lane closures begin August 13 in Forest Lake

ROSEVILLE, Minn. – Motorists traveling on Interstate 35 between Highway 8 and Highway 97 in Forest Lake and Columbus will encounter lane closures as crews shift traffic to prepare for resurfacing on August 13.

Beginning at 7 a.m., Monday, August 13, both directions of  I-35 between Highway 8 and Highway 97 will have periodic lane closures and traffic shifts for approximately two days. The traffic shift will occur during non-peak travel times; temporary lane closures will not occur on southbound I-35 between 5 a.m. and 8 a.m. or on northbound I-35 between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.

At 5 p.m., Tuesday, August 14, northbound I-35 will reopen to three driving lanes between Highway 97 and Highway 8. By 7 a.m., Wednesday, August 15, the southbound traffic shift will be completed and southbound I-35 will be restricted to two lanes for approximately four months.

Once the shift is complete, the two southbound I-35 driving lanes will be separated with concrete barriers. Motorists exiting at Broadway Avenue will need to stay in the right lane as they approach the construction zone. Please pay attention to signs in the area showing the designated lanes.

All ramps in the area will remain open; however, the exit ramp to the Forest Lake rest area will close 7 a.m. Wednesday, August 15 for approximately two months.

Traffic delays and backups are expected throughout the course of the two-year project. Motorists are advised to plan ahead and allow extra time to reach their destinations.

The work is part of the I-35 North Metro Split project, which includes resurfacing the existing pavement from the I-35W/I-35E split to Highway 8; replacing the Highway 97 bridge with a diverging diamond interchange;  replacing the northbound I-35W bridge over I-35E and the westbound Highway 8 bridge over I-35. The project will provide a better ride quality, as well as improve safety and traffic flow at the Highway 97 interchange. Additional information is available at www.mndot.gov/metro/projects/i35northmetrosplit.

Major construction for the project is expected to take place in 2018 and 2019. Motorists should anticipate long-term lane closures during each year of construction. Check 511 for real-time traffic updates: www.511mn.org