By Nina Moini

OAKDALE, Minn. (WCCO) — There will be significant delays in the Monday morning commute in the east Twin Cities metro.

A large sinkhole closed Interstate 694 in both directions between I-94 and Highway 36 until further notice. The problem started overnight with a water main break underneath the road.

As Nina Moini reports, officials say it could take several days to complete repairs.

“I’m just flabbergasted, we heard it on the news. We were going to watch the game with some friends, some Viking fans,” Brenda Sjerven said.

Football should’ve been the main attraction on a Sunday for Brenda Sjerven and others in the Oakdale area.

“So we thought we’d drive by and see what happened and it’s just absolutely amazing. It is like holy cow, I’m glad nobody got hurt,” Sjerven said.

A neighbor called in the water main break along I-694 and the road has been closed for several miles since 9 a.m. Sunday.

“We are asking the public and citizens to conserve water,” Michelle Stark with the Oakdale Police Department said.

Oakdale Police Officer Michelle Stark says although the water is safe to drink and was never compromised, Oakdale area residents should try their best to conserve water until the city says the source of the break is found and repaired.

“We have utilities that run underneath state roadways. If they spring a leak, water could be damaging. That’s what happened in this case,” Kevin Gutknecht with the Minnesota Department of Transportation said.

MnDOT officials say to expect traffic delays in the east metro in the coming days as crews continue repairing the damage.

“Monday rush hour is going to be a challenge on this side of the metro, 35E is going to bear the bulk of the traffic detour from over here,” Gutknecht said.

It is going to be a good idea to take plenty of extra time Monday morning if you’re in that area.

 

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