Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

Nov. 9, 2018

Weather postpones the Highway 97 bridge closure in Columbus until Nov. 16-19

ROSEVILLE, Minn. – Due to weather, the Highway 97 bridge closure over Interstate 35 in Columbus, originally planned for Nov. 9-12, has been rescheduled for Nov. 16-19.

The Highway 97 bridge will close for removal at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 16, weather permitting.  Motorists will not have access to or from I-35 at Highway 97 during the closure. Motorists will be directed to follow the posted detour to the Broadway Avenue interchange for I-35 access.

Highway 97 will reopen by 5 a.m. Monday, Nov. 19. Motorists will continue to use the north half of the new bridge over I-35 while the south side of the bridge is being constructed.

Additionally, I-35 traffic will be reduced to a single lane when approaching Highway 97 from the east or west and will be diverted around the work zone by using the exit and entrance ramps at Highway 97 during the following times:

  • Southbound I-35 traffic will be diverted to the ramps beginning 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 16 through 10 a.m., Sunday, Nov. 18.
  • Northbound I-35 traffic will be diverted to the ramps beginning 10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16 through 5 a.m. Monday, Nov. 19.

Traffic delays and backups are expected throughout the weekend. 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 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 511mn.org.