The beginning and the end of the Friday rush hour were as tame as we've had in a while. In the middle, one big fat traffic mess.

About 7 a.m., four vehicles, including a taxi, collided inside the Lowry Hill Tunnel and blocked the two left lanes of westbound I-94 for nearly an hour.  That left only one lane open for traffic.

Within minutes, a huge bottleneck developed with traffic at a standstill at Riverside Avenue and later nearly 3 miles to Franklin Avenue. The gridlock finally loosened around 8:15 a.m.

Northbound 35W was not untouched either. The crammed conditions on I-94 forced traffic to back up on 35W from the downtown exits back to 46th Street. That log jam also loosened just after 8 a.m.

As far as the rest of the metro, only three to four fender benders and stalls popped up all day. With roads in good condition, traffic sailed along.

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