Franklin Ave Bridge (County Road 5)

Hennepin County is reconditioning the Franklin Avenue Bridge (County Road 5) in Minneapolis. The bridge spans West River Parkway and the Mississippi River. Crews will rehabilitate this historic structure during two construction seasons. In 2016, the bridge will be closed to complete the work. 

Start date: Spring 2015

Bridge closure: May 8, 2016

Bridge reopen to traffic: Fall 2016

End date: Spring 2017

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Construction updates

June 16, 2016

Crews have completed most of the work which required late evening hours, including removing all of the old bridge deck, crushing concrete, and hauling the debris offsite for recycling.

As of this week, all of the old bridge deck has been removed, 80 percent of the cap beams are set, and nearly half of the panels are placed. Crews expect to set the last cap beam next week and place the last deck panel by July 4. The bridge will remain closed until Labor Day as a lot of work remains before it is safe to reopen.

Once the bridge deck is in place, a concrete ornamental railing will be added for protection of motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists. The ornamental railing is being fabricated offsite. The manufacturer has produced nearly half of the 166 pieces so far.

Traffic signals on east side of bridge

The city of Minneapolis has converted the signal lights to flashing red so the intersection on the east side of the bridge provides better efficiency during the bridge closure period. Approach the intersection with added attention and take turns accordingly.

Detours, closures and other travel impacts

Closure and detours starting May 8 

The Franklin Avenue Bridge was closed on Sunday, May 8 to allow for deck work to proceed. The bridge is scheduled to reopen to traffic Labor Day weekend. 

West River Parkway and trail has been closed north of the Franklin Avenue Bridge since June 2014 due to mudslide repair work that will be completed by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. More information about this work can be found on the park board website. Extending the closure south of the bridge has allowed construction crews to continue work near the parkway and trail. A closure is also needed for the deck replacement work in 2016.

There are designated detours for vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians.

Detour map - effective May 8 (PDF)

East River Parkway trail access

To allow for construction work, the Lower East River Parkway trail is closed between the “East River Flats” (University of Minnesota Boathouse) and Cecil Street. The Upper East Parkway trail remains open.

Impacts to boaters and recreational river users

All boaters and recreational users of the river should be mindful of the construction area and steer clear of the site.

Project background

Crews are working to restore the bridge closer to the original 1923 designs. The new bridge deck will incorporate safe, modern, multimodal features such as separated on-road bike lanes, walkways, overlook nooks and architectural lighting.

During fall of 2016 and spring of 2017, the contractor will complete bridge restoration activities, along with final tasks and clean-up.

Project overview - August 2015 (PDF)


The new concept provides a non motorized crossing on the west end of the bridge. Currently no crossing exists at this end. This is intended to improve safety for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists. See the document below for layout for the west end of the bridge. 

Bridge plan west end (PDF)

Construction timeline

The 2015 season will include below deck concrete rehabilitation. This work will require the installation of a working platform under the bridge. To attach this platform, workers will need to close the outer lanes of the bridge so that construction vehicles can have access to the underdeck and rehabilitation.

In 2015 the contractor will manufacture "precast" bridge deck panels that will be placed during the 2016 bridge closure. These panels will be made at a site, adjacent to the river, just south of the Washington Avenue Bridge. This will allow use of river transportation to float these panels down the river, and these segments will then be hoisted by water borne cranes into their final positions.

During the 2016 construction season, the bridge will be closed for complete deck removal and replacement. A marked detour will be provided during this closure. A detailed closure timeline will be provided before the actual closure.

Signed detours will be provided for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists during the bridge deck replacement. 

1889 remnant piers removed

Tuesday, June 23, 2015, Hennepin County Commissioner McLaughlin, Minneapolis Park Board Commissioner Vreeland, and Minnesota State Representative Kahn joined project staff for a river tour of the remnant piers.

During the tour, the elected officials accepted the concept of salvaging the 1889 remnant pier blocks and re-locating to the "Bohemian Flats" area within Minneapolis Park Board property on the western bank of the river. The salvaging process of the pier blocks was completed on June 24, 2015.

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