Lake of the Isles Parkway to reopen to cars

Peavey Fountain
Lake of the Isles Parkway. File photo

Lake of the Isles Parkway will reopen to vehicle traffic June 29 after months of closures intended to create more room for residents to practice social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board will begin to reopen some parkways to vehicle traffic starting June 26 with Main Street Southeast in Marcy Holmes. 

Lake of the Isles Parkway will reopen to cars Monday, June 29, along with Lake Nokomis Parkway and East River Road. Parks officials say the roads reopening had lower use from pedestrians.

The Lake of the Isles reopening is also intended to coincide with the pending closure of Cedar Lake Parkway at the Kenilworth Corridor on July 6, when Southwest Light Rail Transit construction activity will close the road just east of Burnham Road for 16 days. 

“Given current available funding, MPRB is prioritizing extending closures for the most heavily used parkway spaces where added space for social distancing is most needed,” Park Board President Jono Cowgill said in a statement. “Providing parkway space for people has been incredibly successful and I look forward to providing more opportunities for opening up these spaces if funding becomes available in the future.”

Pedestrianized parkways will remain in place around Cedar Lake, Bde Maka Ska and Lake Harriet as well as on West River Parkway.

In May, commissioners voted to extend parkway closures into the summer and allocated $250,000 to pay for associated costs like barrier and sign rentals. That money will last through July 19 with all enacted closures in place, Superintendent Al Bangoura said June 27. With some closures ending sooner, it’s possible closures that remain will extend beyond July 19, park officials said.