14JULY10 Hwy 169 Construction
The morning and evening commute between Anoka and Brooklyn Park is 10 miles and passes through a 4-year major project on Hwy 169. This trio of roadways makes up one of the top traffic intersections in the state.
The drive is improving as progress is made and I look forward to the day that it is complete. Highway 169 is being routed over Highway 81 and 85th Avenue which will eliminate two sets of semaphores in that congested area. A series of ramps and bridges will keep traffic flowing through the rush hours. There will still be a few stoplights from 93rd Avenue northward, but life isn’t perfect.
For those in the area, here is the summary from the MNDOT site.
Construction of the Hwy 169 Triangle began in July of 2008. Bypasses for Hwy 169 and County Road 81 were built through November of 2008 and traffic was switched onto those bypasses. Traffic on 85th Ave. (County Road 109) was restricted to a single lane in each direction on the eastbound side of the roadway and work began on constructing the north half of 85th Avenue which was completed in early October of 2009. Bridge construction on the bridge over BNSF Railroad and County Road 81 and the new alignment of southbound Hwy 169 began in late fall of 2008 and work continued throughout the winter on the bridges but work on the Highway was suspended and began again this spring 2009.
The 2009 construction season was spent constructing southbound Hwy 169, County Road 81 and the north half of 85th Ave. On the same day, 85th Avenue traffic was switched onto the newly constructed westbound lanes between Jefferson Hwy and Xylon Avenue North. In early October of 2009, County Road 81 traffic was switched to the newly built roadway. Bridge work and retaining wall work will also continue through the end of 2009.
southbound Hwy 169 traffic was switched to the new lanes of southbound Hwy 169. Once the northbound Hwy 169 traffic is switched to the new southbound roadway in the early fall, work will then begin on the new alignment of northbound Hwy 169. The summer of 2010 will also include continued construction of the south half of 85th Ave. Bridge and retaining wall construction will continue in 2010. Reconstruction of 85th Ave will be finished and both east and westbound lanes will be fully open by Fall of 2010.
The final year of construction in 2011 will feature completion of northbound Hwy 169 and traffic will then be moved to the new northbound roadway. As the project wraps up, miscellaneous work will be completed on 85th Ave for final completion in the Fall of 2011.