The Drive will keep you up to speed with the latest on Twin Cities commuting.

Lane blockage irks Washington Avenue drivers

Posted by: Tim Harlow Updated: November 13, 2013 - 1:53 PM

In the past week, the Drive has received a handful of emails from steamed motorists wondering why a lane of eastbound Washington Avenue between 2nd and 3rd Avenues has been blocked off by a police car during the morning rush hour and a "lane closed" sign.

"It looks like they're letting cars in and out. But there's never any cars going in or out.  They take up an entire lane of Washington ave. unnecessarily," said Mike Fadlovich. "I've talked to many people who are frustrated with this

The short answer is a refurbishing project going on at the Wells Fargo Operations Center.

Construction has been most visible on the 3rd Street side of the building where the driveway used by armored cars to get to the underground garage is closed. As a result, deliveries and departures are being made using the ramp on the Washington Avenue side of the building.

Because of its design, armored cars can't make the turn onto the ramp from Washington Avenue, So the contractor has arranged for the lane to be closed, said Casper Hill, a City of Minneapolis spokesman.

The contractor is paying $1 per linear foot per day to have the lane closed, Hill said.  And the closure will continue for the next couple weeks, he said.

"It's one of those odd things," Hill said. "There are cones and it's closed off, but drivers can't figure out what is going on."

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