3-year I-35W construction project starts Sunday between Roseville and Lino Lakes

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The countdown is on for a major, long-term road repair project on I-35W with construction taking place in the north metro area starting Sunday night.

The first stages of the work began at 8 p.m. Sunday between Roseville and Lino Lakes in what will be a major overhaul for the major highway.

Drivers passing by the electric signs and orange barrels Sunday could see how the pieces are in place along the roughly 11.5-mile stretch of highway.

Starting Sunday through April 7, there will be overnight lane closures heading north on I-35W from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. between County Road E2 and I-694.

There will also be closures on I-35W between the Hwy. 10 interchange and County Road J in both directions.

The closures are so crews can pave the areas for future traffic shifts.

“I always dread the construction, always,” said Vincent, a motorist in the area.

“It doesn’t bother me a bit,” countered Eugene Hauer. “It’s going to cause traffic jams, but people have to put up with it.”

At the Sunrise Café in Lino Lakes near the highway, neighbors like Vincent Villella are digesting the project along with their breakfast.

“My wife goes to college to Anoka, Coon Rapids area,” Vincent Villella said. “It will be an impact.”

The changes mark MnDOT’s 3-year project to build MnPass express lanes, repave the highway, ramps and roads and repair and replace some bridges.

The MnPass lanes will eventually go in each direction in the middle of I-35W between Lexington Avenue in Blaine and County Road C in Roseville.

Later this month, more stages of the project will kick in.