I-35W Minnesota River Bridge Reconstruction Project Uses Massive Quantities of Concrete Pipe and Precast Structures for Drainage and Water Management


Burnsville, MN


Ames Construction

Solutions: RCP meets tight construction schedule and adapts to frequent changes during design build project.

Progress continues for the reconstruction of the I-35W Bridge spanning the Minnesota River (known as the Minnesota River Bridge) in Burnsville, MN. The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), in partnership with Dakota County, Hennepin County, the City of Bloomington and the City of Burnsville, are working together to raise I-35W out of the Minnesota River floodplain and improve pedestrian access across the river. In addition to reconstructing the river bridge, the work includes reconstructing a second bridge over nearby 106th Street, reconstructing south ramps, and building an auxiliary lane.

Overall project goals are focused on improved safety, enhanced mobility, smoother road surfaces and upgraded drainage. The project started in August 2018 and is expected to continue through November 2021.

Supporting the drainage improvements and infrastructure reconstruction, County Materials is supplying more than 25,000 lineal feet of reinforced concrete pipe (RCP) in diameters ranging from 12” to 60”. Additionally, the company is providing more than 295 precast structures in sizes ranging from 27”- 96”. As of early 2020, County Materials has delivered nearly 75 percent of the pipe and manholes needed.

Of this, more than 800 lineal feet of 60” CL4 pipe was delivered by County Materials to the site in a very short time to meet design build changes on the project.

The contractor, Ames Construction, endured harsh conditions during the winter of 2018-19 that challenged crews with brutal weather followed by a significantly higher than usual flooding during the spring and early summer months. This was further complicated by large volumes of rain throughout the summer.

By the end of 2019, the northbound I-35W roadway was completed, including the northbound Minnesota River Bridge, with all six lanes of traffic shifted onto this completed work. The I-35 Minnesota River Bridge will remain open to three lanes of traffic during peak travel times in both direction for the duration of the project. For more project updates, visit the MnDOT’s website: https://www.dot.state.mn.us/metro/projects/i35wbloomington/