The first and last portions of the rush hour were tame, but the middle part was rife with crashes and delays.

A pedestrian halted Blue Line trains for about 10 minutes just after 5 a.m. by walking in the tunnel at Minnehaha Pkwy. That person was arrested and banned from the transit system for a month.

Traffic sailed along until shortly after 7 a.m. when a couple drivers collided in the left lane of the eastbound Crosstown near Penn Avenue. That caused a big jam up that extended back to near Gleason Road at its peak and led to 20-minute commute times from Shady Oak Road to 35W.

A flurry of crashes popped up between 7:15 a.m. and 8 a.m. in a number of places:

  • Southbound Hwy. 252 at 85th Avenue in Brooklyn Park
  • Eastbound 694 at County Road 81 in Brooklyn Park. Four vehicles involved.
  • Hwy. 55 at Hwy. 13 in Mendota Heights
  • Eastbound Crosstown at Penn Avenue in Edina
  • Southbound 35E at Maryland Avenue in St. Paul
  • Westbound 94 at Hennepin Avenue in Minneapolis

Once those cleared out, traffic did pick up the pace, but northbound 35W struggled from Crosstown to downtown Minneapolis.  Late in the rush hour, the hot spot shifted to Hwy. 100 in both directions between 50th Street and Glenwood Avenue.

At present, aside from the Hwy. 100 mess, things are pretty much back to normal. 

That's it for today. I'll be back Thursday with your live look at the morning drive to work. 

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8:45 a.m. update: The grind on Hwy. 100 continues

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Minnesota bridges are in rough shape, report says