Major Highway Systems of Minnesota
In order to access the inside sections of the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area, one must take into consideration the various roads crisscrossing the Twin Cities, and in this article, we’ll be documenting the most important ones to the metropolis, and why you should take some roads in higher regard over other roads. There are many kinds of roads passing through the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, from hundred-mile Interstates to small-two lane State Routes, the one that we shall talk about is the former.
First, there’s Interstate 94, which splits the metropolitan area in half with its path. The route passes through many important areas in the Twin Cities metropolis, the road going across and close to the downtown areas of both Minneapolis and St. Paul and whatnot. The route has three auxiliary Interstates originating from it, these are: Interstate 694, Interstate 494, and Interstate 394, taking these routes from the originator route of I-94 will allow even greater access to the city, and thus we shall be talking about three next.
First off, there is the Interstates 694 and 494, which, when highlighted on a map, show a massive beltway that surrounds the metropolitan area of the Twin Cities. The former splits from the main freeway at around Oakdale, while the latter also splits from the main in the neighboring town of Woodbury. I-694 goes north, then goes into a westward direction near the neighborhood of Pine Springs, it intersects with both I-35E and I-35W, and just after crossing the Mississippi, the freeway merges once more with its originator. The latter, which is I-494, goes south into Woodbury instead, and crosses the bend of the Mississippi River into South St. Paul, Sunfish Lake, and Mendota Heights, before crossing into the other side of the river at Fort Snelling, it, like its northern counterpart, intersects with Interstates 35E and 35W. After passing through the neighboring town of Bloomington, the freeway crosses paths with US Routes 212 and 169 near Eden Prairie, after that, it sharply turns towards the north, crossing with Route 12 before merging with Interstate 94 near Maple Grove.
Then there’s the odd one out, which is Interstate 394. Splitting from the originator route of Interstate 94 deep within the city center of Minneapolis, the freeway is a brief one, albeit an important one if you wanted to access the city center as well as the neighboring areas. The road goes exclusively west, intersecting with State Route 100 and US Route 169, before merging with Interstate 494 a few miles south of the nearby town of Plymouth slightly in the northwest.
Finally, there are the two routes of Interstates 35W and 35E. These two routes come from the Interstate 35 down south in Burnsville, where it splits into the two Interstates. First, there’s Interstate 35W, which courses through much of central Minneapolis, after briefly intersecting with Interstate 94, it crosses over the Mississippi River on Saint Anthony Falls Bridge, it then intersects with Interstate 694 and US Route 10. As for 35E, it goes to St. Paul, passing through Eagan and Mendota Heights. The route then intersects with I-94 and I-694 and goes north, merging into I-35 with its twin route I-35W just a few miles south of Colombus.