The heavy lifting on the rebuilding of Interstate 35E between University Avenue and Maryland Avenue won't start until later this year, but the first signs of progress will begin Wednesday with the closure of segments of Mississippi Street for utility work.

Mississippi Street between York Avenue and Jenks Avenue will close at 6 a.m. Wednesday and reopen in late October.

Mississippi Street between Jenks Avenue and Jessamine Avenue will close at 6 a.m. Thursday and reopen in late October.

During the closure, traffic will be redirected to Terrace Court.

The work preceeds the Cayuga improvment project, in which MnDOT will include new pavement on I-35E, replacing the Cayuga Bridge, the Pennsylvania Avenue Bridge and railroad bridges along the freeway. The project also calls for eliminating freeway access at Pennsylvania Avenue and building a new interchange at Cayuga Street. MnDOT says that will improve freeway access for St. Paul's Phalen Boulevard and correct current safety issues.

In 2014-15, MnDOT also will build a HOT lane from downtown St. Paul through Maplewood from Maryland Avenue to Little Canada Road.

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