Some Minneapolis parkways closing to vehicles, opening to pedestrians and bikers again

Some parkways in Minneapolis will be closing to vehicles once again to allow for more social distancing on trails amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Sections of two Minneapolis parkways—Lake Harriet Parkway between West Minnehaha Parkway and West 43rd Street and the northbound lane of West River Parkway between 4th Avenue North and 11th Avenue South—will open for walkers and bikers and close to vehicle traffic from April 12 to May 31, according to a news release from the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. The southbound lane of West River Parkway will remain open to vehicles. 

Rising COVID-19 infections in Minnesota and increased traffic on the trails adjacent to the parkway prompted the park board to close the parkways to vehicle traffic, as they did at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

"Allowing trail traffic to spread out into the parkways will allow greater separation of park users for social distancing as directed by the Minnesota Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention," the park board said in the release.  

Last spring, the park board closed a number of parkways and roads throughout the city to vehicle traffic to allow for more social distancing for bicyclists and pedestrians. Most parkways reopened to vehicles over the summer.