The weather should be delightful this weekend and that will be perfect for those planning to take in one, two or all three of the big art fairs in Minneapolis.
Or to watch the Twins who have games against the Houston Astros Friday at 7:10 p.m., Saturday at 6:10 p.m. and Sunday at 1:10 p.m. Target Field.
Next door at Target Center, the Lynx host the San Antonio SilverStars at 7 p.m. Friday and the Seattle Storm at 6 p.m. Sunday. Here is a link to parking ramps and lots in downtown Minneapolis. Metro Transit will offer express bus service from I-394 & County Road 73 Park & Ride ramp in Minnetonka. The Northstar Commuter line will run for all three games.
The state's professional soccer team, Minnesota United FC, plays the Atlanta Silverbacks at 7 p.m. Saturday at the National Sports Center. Expect that to bring some traffic to Blaine.
Road work continues on Hwy. 169 in New Hope and Bloomington, and other project start or continue in Inver Grove Heights, Maplewood and Rosemount. And I-94 is open near St. Cloud. Here is your weekend round up:
Metro Transit will offer free rideson Saturday and Sunday to the Uptown, Powderhorn and Loring Park art festivals. Those attending need to download a pass in order to take advantage of the offer.
Uptown Art Fair will bring several street closures to the area of Lake Street and Hennepin Avenue. The 50th annual fete will draw thousands, so parking will be limited. No parking will be allowed on Hennepin Avenue between 28th Street and 31st Street. For those who arrive by bicycle, Nice Ride Minnesota will provide complimentary valet bike corrals.
No parking or driving on The Mall (that's not Nicollet Mall) between Hennepin Avenue and Knox Avenue.
Look for lots of traffic on Hennepin Avenue, W. 15th Street and Willow Street, the streets that surround Loring Park, site of the Loring Park Art Festival. Street parking will be at a premium. Here is where event organizers say you can find pay parking.
The Powderhorn Park Art Fair takes place Saturday and Sunday in the south Minneapolis park. But look for extra traffic on 15th Avenue and on Cedar Avenue and Chicago Avenue, the main arteries on either side of the park. Neighborhood streets also will have extra traffic, so allow extra time to find a parking spot.
Highway 169 in Bloomington
This week has been a nightmare for commuters crossing the Bloomington Ferry Bridge and there's no reason to think the weekend will be any better. In fact, it might be worse with fans trying to get to Canterbury Downs for races Friday through Sunday, a pack the stands event at Raceway Park, Valleyfair and points south and west of the Twin Cities.
The highway will be single lane in both directions from Old Shakopee Road to Pioneer Trail. In addition the lane closing the following ramps to northbound Hwy. 169 are shut down
- Pioneer Trail
- Old Shakopee Road
- Hwy 101
- County Road 21
Next week traffic will be shifted from the northbound side of the bridge to the southbound side. In preparation for that change, the ramp from Hwy. 13/Hwy. 101 to northbound 169 will be closed from midnight and 2 a.m. Friday.
Detour: The suggest detours are to use I-35W, Hwy. 41 or Hwy. 101. Your guess is as good as mine if those alternates will save time. All three have seen extra traffic this week, and driving out of the way may cost you as much time as sitting in the 169 backup.
Highway 169 in New Hope
What would a summer weekend be without a closure on Hwy. 169 in the northwest suburbs of New Hope, Plymouth and Golden Valley? We've become accustomed to them since they've been with us all summer and will be for at least two more weekends.
This weekend, the northbound lanes between Hwy. 55 and I-94 will close from 9 p.m. Friday until 5 a.m. Monday.
Detour: County Road 81, Interstates 394, 494 and 94, and Hwy. 100.
Southbound 35E will be reduced to a single lane between County Road 42 and the I-35E/W/35 split in Burnsville. Restrictions run from 8 p.m. Friday until 5 a.m. Monday.
The good news is that all lanes in both directions between the Split and Cedar Avenue will be open by Tuesday. Work south of the Split to County Road 2 in Scott County will start Aug. 26.
MnDOT will be installing new culverts along Hwy. 3 and will close the highway to traffic from 7 p.m. Friday until 5 a.m. Monday from 142nd Street and 140th Circle in Rosemount.
To the north, look for a detour as the highway is closed between Ann Marie Trail and 80th Street. The ramps at Hwy. 55 also are closed. This will be in effect until Aug. 11 for concrete repair.
Detour: Motorists are advised to follow the posted detour using Courthouse Blvd to access Hwy 55.
Bridge work in downtown Minneapolis
The left lane of eastbound I-94 between I-35W and Hiawatha Avenue will be closed from 10 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday. The ramp from eastbound 94 to northbound 35W also will be closed. That could make it a bit more difficult for fans leaving Friday's Twins game.
A reminder that Hwy. 36 remains closed in both directions between Hwy. 61 and White Bear Avenue as work on the new English Street interchange rolls on. To the west, the highway is a single lane in each direction from Hwy. 61 to Edgerton Street for bridge construction at Keller Lake.
The ramp from westbound I-694 to eastbound Hwy. 36 is closed until 5 a.m. Monday.
Lake Nokomis Pkwy.
The parkway circling Lake Nokomis in south Minneapolis will be off limts to vehicular traffic from 6 a.m. to noon Saturday for the Miracle Kits Triathlon.
Emergency exercises in Arden Hills
Bethel University will be the epicenter of activity as several agencies come together for a training exercise Saturday. They are testing their ability to respond to a variety of emergencies.
As a result, expect to hear lots of sirens in the area around the univeristy. Traffic on Old Hwy. 10 and Snelling Avenue could be impacted at times.
Paving on University Avenue in NE. Minneapolis
Look out for periodic lane closures on University Avenue between Central Avenue and 27th Avenue NE. There also will be parking restrictions.
I-94 open in St. Cloud
The collective cheer we are hearing from drivers who venture northwest of the Twin Cities is that all lanes on I-94 between Clearwater and St. Cloud are open. MnDOT crews finished a pavement rehab project and other upgrades on Wednesday. The 7.5 mile segement from County Road 75 to Hwy. 24 in Clearwater had been reduced to a single lane since spring.
That doesn't mean smooth sailing. Drivers are likely to run into construction between the Crow River in St. Michael over to Monticello. But the backups are not expected to be as great as those during the Clearwater construction.