Construction on I-494 in the west metro had a wide impact Monday morning as the ripple effect had traffic crammed all the way from Rogers to Maple Grove.
Commuters easily doubled their drive times as traffic stacked up not only on I-494 but also on eastbound 94 from Hwy. 101 to the Fish Lake Interchange. For much of the morning, that 10-mile drive averaged more than 30 minutes. At 9 a.m., the drive was still taking 20 minutes.
The problems also were felt on Hwy. 169 from Hwy. 610 in Brooklyn Park down to I-394 as commuters scooted over to the east to avoid the mess on I-494.
Southbound I-494 was a single lane from the I-94/694 split down to Rockford Road. The freeway was supposed to be two lanes, but "we had some issues this morning," a MnDOT spokeswoman said.
Commuters in downtown Minneapolis felt the pain, too. A trio of crashes at Hennepin Avenue, I-394 and LaSalle Avenue tied up eastbound 94 drivers for nearly an hour between 7:15 and 8:15 a.m. The five-mile hike from the Brooklyn Center curve to downtown Minneapolis jumped to 15 to 20 minutes at the peak. Eastbound 394 drivers also saw increased travel times.