Multiple events make for an exciting week downtown
Plan ahead and know your transportation options
The second week of April will be a busy week for large spring events taking place at Target Field and Target Center. On Monday and Wednesday, the Minnesota Twins and the Minnesota Timberwolves will each host home games, including the Twins home opener Monday, April 11. Because big crowds will be coming Downtown, it’s a good idea to know your transportation options and plan ahead, whether you plan to drive, take transit, bike or walk.
Monday, April 11
- Twins home opener vs. White Sox at Target Field: 3:10 p.m. – gates open at 1 p.m.
- Timberwolves vs. Rockets at Target Center: 7 p.m. – gates open at 6 p.m.
Wednesday, April 13
- Twins vs. White Sox at Target Field: 7 p.m. – gates open at 5:30 p.m.
- Timberwolves vs. Pelicans at Target Center: 7 p.m. – gates open at 5 p.m.
Streets closed for construction
This is a busy street construction season in downtown Minneapolis. Drivers coming into the area should check on all the street and lane closings. A map of these is available at www.minneapolismn.gov/publicworks/traffic.
Getting where you’re going
Downtown Minneapolis provides transportation opportunities to meet a variety of experiences, whether you want to drive, ride a bus, take a train, bike or walk.
When visiting Downtown, remember the following tips to minimize delays and maximize enjoyment of all the activities going on.
· Plan ahead – Visit TwinsBaseball.com/transportation or TargetCenter.com to learn more about all your transportation choices. Visit the Minneapolis Downtown Improvement District’s events calendar at www.MinneapolisDID.com to see what events are going on any day.
· Know your parking options – There is available parking throughout Downtown. If you prefer convenient access to Target Field and Target Center, the adjacent A,B,C and Hawthorne ramps have plenty of capacity, and the ramps empty smoothly after games without long waits. Parking meters around Target Center and Target Field are limited to two hours during events and cannot be used for parking during these games. The City will enforce the two-hour meter limits during events.
· Use transit – Target Field and Target Center are extremely transit-friendly. Both venues are located at the junction of Northstar commuter rail, the METRO Blue and Green lines, and a number of bus lines at or nearby Target Field Station.
· Bicycles are another great way to the games – Bicyclists are reminded to use headlights and taillights after dark and, if possible, to wear light or reflective clothing.
· Come early/stay late – The Warehouse District is ready to welcome fans for another summer of baseball, basketball, shows and excitement. Take part in activities, shopping, dining, and other entertainment before and after games and concerts. Enjoy the extra time to experience all Downtown has to offer and beat the traffic.
Taking transit to events
The Northstar commuter rail line offers direct service to Target Field from stations in Big Lake, Elk River, Ramsey, Anoka, Coon Rapids and Fridley. For added savings, the Northstar Roundtrip Family Pass offers roundtrip rides for two adults and up to three kids ages 6-17 for $20 or less. Customers can buy round-trip tickets and Northstar Roundtrip Family Passes for Twins games online at metrotransit.org/Northstar. Full train schedules for every game and fare information are available for viewing and printing at metrotransit.org/twins. Additionally, Northstar Link bus service from St. Cloud and Becker is scheduled to connect with trains at Big Lake for every game this season.
The METRO Blue Line runs from Bloomington, past Target Center, and directly to Target Field’s gates. It serves large Park & Ride facilities at Fort Snelling and 28th Avenue stations, which have nearly 2,800 free parking spaces.
The METRO Green Line runs from Union Depot in Saint Paul, along University Avenue, into Minneapolis and ends at Target Field Station.
Direct bus service on Twins Express Route 679 from the County Road 73 Park & Ride in Minnetonka with hundreds of free parking spaces will be offered for every Twins home game again in 2016. Buses start taking fans to the ballpark two hours before each game. Return service begins two hours after first pitch (example: 7:10 p.m. game, buses begin returning to the Park & Ride at 9:10 p.m.) and continues roughly every half hour until an hour after the game ends.
A number of popular and frequent bus routes stop near Target Field. Routes 3, 14 southbound and 94 (94 only until 7 p.m. weeknights, no weekend service) serve Ramp B/5th Street Transit Center adjacent to Target Field and Target Center. Many other frequent routes travel along Hennepin and Nicollet avenues just blocks away. Online tools and information for instantly planning bus or train trips to Twins games is available at metrotransit.org/twins.
The City of Minneapolis takes a number of steps to manage traffic during big events Downtown. The volume of pedestrians, bikes, and cars Downtown before and after these events means increased traffic, but there are several ways the City works to improve operations and minimize congestion, including:
- Traffic control agents are at many Downtown intersections during peak times before and after the events. Traffic control agents at intersections are key to maintaining traffic flow and improving pedestrian safety when volumes are high.
- Special traffic signal timing patterns are used to move high numbers of vehicles during events.
- Dynamic messaging signs throughout Downtown provide drivers with real-time information as they move around the area. There are currently more than 70 of these signs Downtown, which are used to direct people to parking, to notify drivers when key parking ramps fill, and to help drivers find their way around.
Events calendar makes it easy to plan ahead
Whether you want to go to a game, catch a play or see a concert, finding just the right events and activities for your family is easy when you use the Minneapolis Downtown Improvement District’s online events calendar.
The calendar is on the Downtown Improvement District’s website at www.MinneapolisDID.com. The list includes events and entertainment at dozens of venues, big and small, throughout Downtown. The list can be viewed and sorted in several different ways to help you find what you’re looking for. The calendar includes sporting events, live performances, theater events, festivals and parades, exhibits, and many other entertainment options. The calendar makes it easy to find out if there are lots of events on a given day, and knowing what else is happening Downtown will help you plan ahead to minimize transportation delays.
Help prevent car break-ins
The Minneapolis Police Department encourages you to protect yourself from vehicle break-ins. Get in the habit of keeping all of your belongings in the trunk of your car, prior to arriving at your destination, and never leave belongings in plain view. Remember to always call 911 if you see suspicious behavior.
Making event days a great experience
Many City departments, the Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Ballpark Authority, Target Center, the Minnesota Vikings, the Minnesota Department of Transportation, Hennepin County, Metro Transit, ABC Ramps, the Warehouse District Business Association, the Downtown Improvement District, the Hennepin Theatre District, the Minneapolis Convention Center, the Guthrie Theater, and others are all taking steps to make event days in Downtown a success.
Published Apr 8, 2016