Wooddale Avenue Bridge Improvements

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Wooddale Avenue Bridge Reconstruction Rendering

Latest updates

This project is substantially complete and no additional updates will be provided.

The bridge is now ready for the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) to begin their work in 2019. If you are interested in learning more about the Metropolitan Council’s SWLRT project or signing up for updates, visit www.swlrt.org.

The following traffic control is expected to be in place until that time:

  • All-way stops signs will remain at the ramp intersections and at the south frontage road (regional trail crossing). 

    Project background

    Improvements are planned this summer for the Wooddale Avenue bridge over Highway 7. The improvements are intended to improve sight lines for vehicles and to build safe and comfortable pedestrian and bicycle facilities across the bridge.

    Improvements will include:

    • Widening the bridge deck by seven feet on each side, creating a four-lane road for traffic. Widening the bridge will create 12-foot-wide sidewalks, six-foot-wide bike lanes and a turn lane for the Highway 7 entrance ramps.
    • Concrete walls will be pulled back as part of the bridge widening, creating better sight lines for drivers approaching Wooddale Avenue South from the Highway 7 ramps.
    • Landscaping at strategic locations will soften the feel of the corridor and complement the Southwest Light Rail Transit Wooddale Station and Via development.

    City staff continues to work with Southwest Light Rail Transit on installation of traffic signals and a regional trail underpass. No exact date has been identified.

    Resources and documents

    Frequently asked questions

    • Has an underpass or overpass for the regional trail been considered?

      A regional trail underpass is scheduled for construction as part of the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) project. City staff continues to monitor the timeline for SWLRT construction.
    • How can I stay updated on the project status?

      You can stay updated on the project status by signing up for project email updates.

      You can also text SLPMN WDBRIDGE to 468311 for text alerts about the project.
    • Why wasn’t this done originally?

      The original bridge design met all state and federal requirements. Several factors have contributed to this year’s bridge enhancement project, including changes in best designs for vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists; additional development planned for the area; and continuing delays to Southwest Light Rail Transit construction.
    • What will the phasing be?

      Construction sequencing for the 2018 improvements is still being finalized; however, plans are to keep at least one half of the bridge open throughout construction. The project started in late July and is expected to be completed by late fall. Refer to the project webpage for the most current schedule.

      A later phase of the project – traffic signal installation and a regional trail underpass – is part of the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) project. An exact date has not been set for these improvements; city staff continues to work with the SWLRT on scheduling. SWLRT construction is tentatively set to start in late 2018 or early 2019, with passenger service starting in 2023.
    • How will Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) play into this project?

      Traffic signals and a regional trail underpass are planned for this area as part of the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) project. That project is scheduled to open for passenger service in 2023, with construction tentatively set to start in late 2018 or early 2019. No exact date has been identified for installation of traffic signals and the regional trail underpass.
    • What about traffic lights and signals?

      City staff continues to work with the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) on installation of traffic signals and a regional trail underpass. Both projects are planned as part of SWLRT construction; no exact date has been identified.
    • Wasn’t this bridge just built?

      The current bridge opened in 2010. Several factors have contributed to the current planned enhancements, including changes to best designs for vehicles, pedestrians and bicycles; additional development planned for the area; and continuing delays to the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) project timeline.
    • What will the bike lanes look like?

      The bike lanes will have green markings at the intersections. View the visualization of Wooddale Avenue northbound to see what they will look like. 
    • What is the expected price of the new bridge, and how is it being funded?

      The project cost is approximately $2.4 million and is being funded through the Elmwood tax increment financing (TIF) district, established for redevelopment projects in the area. The city is able to use some of those TIF funds to pay for infrastructure improvements.
    • What upgrades will be made for pedestrian safety?

      A regional trail underpass will be constructed with the Southwest Light Rail Transit project. View the visual of the planned underpass.

    • What improvements are being made to the bridge?

      Improvements for the Wooddale bridge will include:

      • Widening the bridge deck by seven feet on each side, creating a four-lane road for traffic. Widening the bridge will create 12-foot-wide sidewalks, six-foot-wide bike lanes and a turn lane for the Highway 7 entrance ramps.
      • Concrete walls will be pulled back as part of the bridge widening, creating better sight lines for drivers approaching Wooddale Avenue South from the Highway 7 ramps.
      • Landscaping will soften the feel of the corridor and complement the Southwest Light Rail Transit Wooddale Station and and Via development.