Highway 169 reopening earlier than scheduled

Highway 169 is reopening earlier than expected. The Minnesota Department of Transportation announced Friday morning that Highway 169 in the Twin Cities west metro will reopen at 5 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 27 after eight months of construction work that created a ripple-effect of traffic jams.

Work on the Nine Mile Creek Causeway and improvements to Highway 169 from Highway 62 to Highway 55 started Jan. 23. The project was scheduled to finish by Oct. 1.

In addition to replacing the bridge, Highway 169 and nearby ramps were resurfaced and some noise walls were replaced and safety and accessibility improvements were made. The project cost was $64 million. About 90,000 vehicles used Highway 169 each day in the project area before construction.

The Nine Mile Creek Causeway is about three-fourths of a mile and will take traffic over Nine Mile Creek. A causeway is a raised road across a low or wet ground that is supported by fill instead of piers. 

During the project, the highway has been reduced to only one lane southbound from Excelsior Boulevard to 7th Street and one lane northbound from Highway 62 to Bren Road. The entrance ramp from westbound Interstate 394 to southbound Highway 169 has also been closed.

The early completion is also welcome news for Edina and Hopkins residents who saw extra traffic on residential streets, including semi trucks.