West River Parkway
Between Fourth St. S & Franklin Ave. E
Minneapolis, MN 55454
Construction Timeline [PDF]
Current Phase: Construction
Construction: July 2015-September 2016
This project may require road closures.
The failed slope that kept the parkway and trails closed since June 2014 has been repaired
The West River Parkway Slope Repair project is expected to be complete at the end of July 2016. However, the parkway and adjacent trails between Fourth Street South and 25th Street South will remain closed to all traffic until Hennepin County is finished with its work on the Franklin Avenue bridge deck, expected this fall.
View the slope repair update that was presented to the Board of Commissioners.
February 15-March 15, 2016
May 19, 2015
April 15, 2015
January 21, 2015
January 7, 2015
October 22, 2014
August 21, 2014
August 8, 2014
June 21, 2014
June 20, 2014
June 19, 2014
Enter your email to receive updates about meetings, events and decisions.
There are currently no meetings scheduled. Check back or enter your email address above to subscribe and get notified of new meetings.
On June 19, 2014, after historically heavy and sustained rains, a 100-foot wide portion of the Mississippi River's west bank failed, sending over 4,000 cubic yards of mud and debris over West River Parkway and into the river. The slide occurred over a three second period. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officially declared Disaster 4182 on July 21 and Hennepin County was added to the areas eligible to receive reimbursements for disaster-related expenses on August 21, 2014.
After clean-up, the slope was covered by geotextile fabric and sandbags to minimize any further erosion. The slope remains unstable and susceptible to unpredictable slides. The heavily used parkway and adjacent trails will remain closed until construction is complete. Detours have been posted.
The 100 feet of elevation change, 1:1 slopes and weeping groundwater through poor soils made this a very challenging project. In addition, Fairview Hospital had several million dollars of infrastructure critical to its business sitting at the edge of the failed slope. Barr Engineering was hired in mid-August. Its initial tasks were to investigate the failure, protect all infrastructure from further slope failure and engineer temporary and permanent repairs. By early fall, it became apparent that the engineering and permanent repairs of the slope could not be completed by winter 2014-15 and that cold weather construction was inadvisable. Bidding was set for spring 2015, with construction completion by Oct. 31, 2015.
In the meantime, FEMA geotechnical engineers assessed the damage and worked with state, regional and national authorities to reimburse the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) and Fairview Hospital for losses and costs related to the disaster. The engineering costs to clean up, stabilize and repair the slope exceed $5 million. It was critical that all federal regulations were met – which included procurement, contractual, environmental and historical concerns – so that project costs would be reimbursed. The MPRB did not receive design approval from federal historic preservation regulators until April 2015.
Veit & Company was awarded the construction contract in early June 2015 and began work in July. The first month was spent ordering materials and mobilizing. Access to the work area at the top of the slope was extremely difficult. The most challenging part of the project was drilling 87 micropiles at the top of the slope for Wall 3, and no other construction could proceed until Wall 3 was almost completed. Rainfall in August and September caused slope failures almost daily below the construction bench, which created safety hazards for workers and delayed the project by almost three months. The soil froze in mid-December and Veit worked through February to winterize the project and secure the site. Veit restarted work in early April 2016. The work will be complete by July 31, 2016.
West River Parkway and the adjacent trails between 4th Street South and 24th Street South will remain closed until Hennepin County reopens the Franklin Avenue Bridge in fall 2016.