35W Closures: A Few Ideas

Normally, when there’s a big epic road closure (15 miles of 35W!) I read the comments. But I already did for one major closure this summer, and based on rules of comment sections, odds are 100% that the same comments are being made, and they’re going to be talking about bikers sucking within 30 comments. So I’m not bothering.

Instead, I’m offering a few splendid ideas crowdsourced via the streets.mn Twitter feed.

It all started with this:

Our intrepid followers jumped in with more ideas:

These are all much better ideas than reading the comments. We offer up one more idea: There is still time to come to the streets.mn picnic today at Lake Monster, which is accessible via public transit. We’ve closed the RSVP, but we’ll still be glad to see you if you just drop by.

See you there?

About Julie Kosbab

Julie Kosbab is an online marketing consultant and active transportation advocate living in Anoka County, Minnesota. She was one of Minnesota's only League of American Bicyclists Certified Instructors when certified in 2005, and is no longer lonely in that calling. A past member of the National Bicycle Tour Directors Association, she has 2 children and a garage full of bicycles. Find her on Twitter as @betweenstations, or read her (seldom updated) blog at Ride Boldly!

17 thoughts on “35W Closures: A Few Ideas

  1. commissar

    1-5 don’t work for me. my job requires my vehicle, what with all the tools i carry. that said, the 35w closure is just something i need to plan around when i give customers ETAs. additionally, transit is not super practical in the suburbs.

    1. Julie Kosbab Moderator   Post author

      Transit being impractical in the suburbs is an issue that can be addressed with planning.

      Also relevant: If more people have more choices, and make them, it helps those who have strong utility need to use a single-passenger vehicle.

      1. commissar

        agreed. big part of the problem out here, is that transit routes are scarce, and usually don’t run on weekends. anoka county, in particular, doesn’t ahve much other than park and rides outside of fridley and coon rapids. the way blaine is building up… it really needs more transit lines. probably the same on the other end of town, in woodbury. MTC’s lack of service makes getting around without a car to be quite difficult.

              1. DuJour

                Even inner Hennepin is bad on the weekends or late at night. I live in Minneapolis on the Mpls/Edina border and it can take me 2-3 hours to get from Stadium Village to home via transit because the busses just don’t run frequently.

                I can imagine it’s effectively impossible for people living outside the city.

        1. Rosa

          it would be so great if those places did have better transit. It’s such a cycle – you put in a good, reliable bus line that runs often enough, people start planning around using it (where they live, shop, work), then more people have reasons to use it and you get more riders…

          Even just some sort of local connector to the park and rides so people who aren’t driving at all can use the express buses helps a lot.

    1. Julie Kosbab Moderator   Post author


      I went to a youth triathlon this morning (drove); it took 10 minutes to get there. After coming home I rode my own bike to the grocery store to grab a few things. Tomorrow, we’ll bike to church.

      I don’t live in Minneapolis. Or St. Paul. Yet these things are possible.

      Monday, I will walk to my office, while my partner may bike or drive, not sure his plan. His commute can be done without a major highway.

      It is absolutely possible to live in the suburbs and orient one’s life to a radius that doesn’t demand constant car use. Thus, why a car I bought with 10 miles on the odometer in 2014 still has under 30k miles.

  2. Paul Nelson

    Hmmmm. Very nice and thoughtful replies, all of you. I have long wondered if we had built our roads just a little differently, if we all; would have an easier time getting around. What if 35W had been built with a completely separate parallel space for non motorized transit, at least within the metro and perhaps a little farther. If so, I believe the 35W expense-way closure would be all-around a little easier.

      1. Frank Phelan

        Eisenhower favored the opposite: he was shocked that interstates would not stop when reaching the cities but slice right through them.

        I like Ike.

  3. Eric

    -2040 is a moral necessity because people cannot afford to live in the city.
    -Rich city-dwellers are hoarding the best neighborhoods for themselves and forcing normal residents outward.
    -Employment is scattered all over the metro vs being concentrated in dense central areas, forcing people’s hands WRT commute (particularly parents, people with working partners, people who change jobs, etc)

    All of these things are bad, and sum up why I love the movement at streets.mn

    Which is why I do not like football-spiking whenever the plebs who cannot afford to live in the city are inconvenienced by the fact that they do not live in the city. Nobody who commutes from Bloomington to Brooklyn Park will be able to just walk or scooter to work this week.

    1. Julie Kosbab Moderator   Post author

      35W is not closed all week. It was a weekend-only closure.

      The reality is that maintenance of infrastructure is going to inconvenience some people. There is no avoidance of that. People who are the most reliant on automobile will be the most inconvenienced unless they plan around it.

  4. Frank Phelan

    Eisenhower favored the opposite: he was shocked that interstates would not stop when reaching the cities but slice right through them.

    I like Ike.

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