Monday's morning commute was marred by crashes that occurred in bunches on Cedar Avenue and I-35W in the south metro, and on southbound 35W, 35E and Hwy. 169 in the north and west metro.

That resulted in long commute times for those on the roads between 7 and 9 a.m. 

The rash of crashes started just after 6 a.m. on southbound 35E at County Road 96. The left lane blocker led to a back up of nearly 3 miles to County Road 14 and a more than 40 minute drive to downtown St. Paul. That route has improved dramatically, but do look for some congestion approaching downtown St. Paul.

On Cedar Avenue, wrecks at McAndrews Road and 127th Street just after 7 set the tone for the day for driver in Apple Valley. Bumper to bumper traffic persisted all the way up to the Crosstown. Drive times were double what they should be for that trip.

The State Patrol is handling crashes on southbound 35W at County Road I and Stinson Blvd at the present, just one of at least five on the freeway between Lexington Avenue and Hwy. 280 this morning.  The current crash has traffic at a near standstill from Hwy. 280 and westbound Hwy. 36 slows at Fairview Avenue.

It was a mess on Hwy. 169 in both directions between Crosstown and Bass Lake Road. A northbound crash at Excelsior Blvd. and another at 7th Street had drivers sitting in traffic between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. while a left-lane blocker just south of 394 had southbound traffic crawling for more than an hour from Medicine Lake Road past a crash at 22nd Street.

In Bloomington and Burnsville, the stretch between Hwy. 13 and the 94th Street produced a trio of accidents, including one in which a pickup was facing the wrong direction in the HOT lane. Those crashes are long gone, but travel time at present is still 32 minutes from the Burnsville split into downtown Minneapolis.

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