I-35 tunnel at Leif Erikson Park completed 29 years ago today

The History Channel website mentions Duluth today in its “This Day in History” feature, pointing out that Duluth Mayor Gary Doty cut the ribbon opening the 1,480-foot–long Leif Erickson Tunnel on Interstate 35 on Oct. 28, 1992.

“With the opening of the tunnel, that highway — which stretches 1,593 miles — was finished at last,” the article notes before delving into how the underground freeway idea replaced an earlier plan to put I-35 on stilts.

“This ‘cut-and-cover’ plan turned out to be a smashing success,” the story concludes, pointing out the “tunnel kept the disruption of the road to a minimum and provided city residents and tourists with an extremely pleasant place to go and relax.”

3 Comments

Helmut Flaag

about 1 month ago

So, one of the guys who designed it, did so through the skills he acquired during a prison learning program after he was busted for an ounce of what we would now describe as garbage cannabis. He received a two year prison sentence with a somewhat famous MN serial killer as his cellmate who he described as 'a nice guy.' I think he was 19 at the time- the designer of the tunnel that is.

This was the same guy who remembered the first Minnesotan killed in Vietnam- as a child, finding a white arrowhead on a swimming beach. RIP Noel Steven Nelson, Quang Tri.

dephanitly

about 1 month ago

Helmut Flaag, where'd you get that info? I'm also curious to find some images of the designs throughout the project. I'd take photos of them myself but to get in the right spot/close enough to some of them I'd have to be in the traffic.

Helmut Flaag

about 1 month ago

From the horses mouth. 
#TruthisStrangerthanFiction.

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