Minnesota State Highway 65

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Trunk Highway 65

MN 65 highlighted in red
Route information
Defined by MS § 161.%section%
Maintained by MnDOT
Length272.511 mi[2] (438.564 km)
Section 1
South end I-35W south of downtown Minneapolis
North endTenth Street South in downtown Minneapolis
Section 2
South end CR 152 in downtown Minneapolis
Major intersections
North end US 71 near Littlefork
CountryUnited States
CountiesHennepin, Anoka, Isanti, Kanabec, Aitkin, Itasca, Koochiching
Highway system
  • Minnesota Trunk Highway System
US 65 MN 66

Minnesota State Highway 65 (MN 65) is a highway in the east–central and northeast parts of the U.S. state of Minnesota, which starts at its split from I-35W, skipping past the downtown Minneapolis core, only to resume at the intersection with Washington Avenue (Hennepin County Road 152) at the north end of downtown Minneapolis to continue north to its northern terminus at its intersection with U.S. Highway 71 (US 71) in Littlefork near International Falls.

Highway 65 is a four lane expressway between Interstate 694 (I-694) in Fridley to just north of State Highway 95 at Cambridge.

The route continues as a two-lane roadway from Cambridge to its northern terminus at Littlefork in northern Minnesota.

At 272.511 miles (438.564 km) in length, State Highway 65 is the third longest state route in Minnesota, after MN 23 and MN 1.

Route description

MN 65 serves as a north–south highway between Minneapolis, Fridley, Blaine, Cambridge, Mora, McGregor, Nashwauk, and Littlefork in east–central and northeast Minnesota.

The roadway is one of three Minnesota state-marked highways to carry the same number as an existing U.S. Highway within the state; the others being MN 61 and MN 169.

MN 65 as it crosses Saint Anthony Falls in Minneapolis

MN 65 begins at a split from I-35W south of downtown Minneapolis. The ramps end at an intersection with Tenth Street South, and so does the MN 65 designation, after MnDOT returned control of the section through downtown to the city in 2005. The MN 65 designation resumes at the intersection of Washington Avenue (CR 152) and 3rd Avenue South at the north end of downtown Minneapolis. MN 65 is signed locally as 3rd Avenue South in downtown Minneapolis. 3rd Avenue South leads to the Third Avenue (Mississippi River) Bridge and becomes Central Avenue upon crossing the river. After its intersection with Hennepin Avenue, the route becomes Central Avenue NE. MN 65 is signed locally as Central Avenue NE for this section. Many Minnesota landmarks are located on Central Avenue NE including the Aveda Institute, the Heights Theater, and the National Sports Center. The route remains Central Avenue until separating in Ham Lake, except for a split in Fridley and Spring Lake Park between I-694 and US 10.[3]

The route is a divided highway from Minneapolis to Cambridge, with a 60-mile-per-hour (97 km/h) speed limit, increasing to 65-mile-per-hour (105 km/h) speed limit beginning in Ham Lake, just outside Blaine.

For part of its route (23 miles [37 km]), MN 65 runs concurrently with MN 27 in Kanabec and Aitkin counties between Woodland and Rice River Township.

Savanna Portage State Park in Aitkin County is located 11 miles (18 km) northeast of the junction of MN 65 and CR 14 in Shamrock Township near McGregor. The park entrance is located on CR 14 in nearby Balsam Township.[4]


MN 65 was authorized in 1934 and 1935. The route was numbered as an extension of old US 65.

By 1940, the route was paved from Minneapolis to just north of McGrath in Aitkin County. By 1949, the route was paved as far north as Libby. By 1953, the route was paved north to its intersection with US 2 at Swan River in Itasca County. Sections of MN 65 north of US 2 were paved in the 1960s and 1970s. The last section of MN 65 paved was through the Nett Lake Indian Reservation in 2000.

The expressway section of MN 65 between I-694 in Fridley to Spring Lake Park was constructed on a new alignment in 1953.

The MN 65 expressway bypass in Cambridge was completed c. 1993.

A portion of MN 65 used to be part of old US 65. US 65 still enters Minnesota from Iowa, but ends now in the city of Albert Lea, where it has a junction with Interstate 35. I-35 and I-35W roughly follow the same route old US 65 used to take from Albert Lea to downtown Minneapolis. Before the freeways were built, the original US 65 had followed Lyndale Avenue between Burnsville and Minneapolis.

In July 2005, the eight-block-long section of MN 65 in downtown Minneapolis, between Washington Avenue and the junction of Tenth Street South with the on- and off-ramps to I-35W, was turned back to city maintenance. This turn-back leaves MN 65 with a gap through downtown. The ramps leading to and going from Minneapolis surface streets south to their junction with I-35W are still part of MN 65 according to state highway logs,[2] and as indicated by the MN 65 shields used on the updated mileposts along those ramps.

It was the last state highway (along with MN 55) to directly run through Downtown Minneapolis, ending a 70-year era in which state trunk highways would have a segment running directly through Downtown Minneapolis.

MN 65 is designated as Legislative Route 105 between Washington Avenue and 37th Avenue Northeast, then as Constitutional Route 5 from Minneapolis to Swan River, then as Legislative Route 159 to Little Fork. The route is not marked with those numbers.

Cultural district

In 2020, Minneapolis officials designated a portion Central Avenue as one of seven cultural districts in the city.[5] The district's boundaries were centered around the intersection of Central and Lowry avenues in the Holland and Windom neighborhoods, from 26th to 18th avenues northeast. The purpose of the cultural district was to promote racial equity, preserve cultural identity, and promote economic growth:[6][7]

Major intersections

I-35W south – Albert Lea, Des Moines
0.9811.57911th Street / Grant StreetNorthbound exit only
1.0861.74810th Street
Gap in route
1.8612.995 Washington Avenue (CR 152)
Mississippi River2.0043.225Third Avenue Bridge

MN 47 north / CSAH 36 east (University Avenue)
2.6224.2204th Street SEFormer US 52
4.4607.178 Lowry Avenue NE (CSAH 153)Former US 8
Spring Lake Park9.945–
CSAH 10Interchange, former US 10
US 10 – St. Paul, Anoka, Elk RiverInterchange
CSAH 14 (125th Avenue)Single-point urban interchange, former MN 242 west
MN 95 – North Branch, PrincetonAccess to Cambridge Medical Center and Anoka-Ramsey Community College
Stanchfield Township51.032–

MN 107 north – Braham
KanabecBrunswick Township58.85194.712
MN 70 east / CSAH 47 – Rock Creek
MN 23 west (Dala Lane) – Ogilvie, Milaca
Southern end of MN 23 overlap

MN 23 east / CSAH 6 west – Hinckley
Northern end of MN 23 overlap
Ford Township81.783131.617
MN 27 west / CR 82 – Isle, Onamia
Southern end of MN 27 overlap
AitkinWilliams Township88.854142.997 MN 18 – Finlayson, Malmo
Rice River Township105.180169.271
MN 27 east – Moose Lake
Northern end of MN 27 overlap
MN 210 east – Cromwell, Carlton
Eastern end of MN 210 overlap
MN 210 west – Aitkin
Western end of MN 210 overlap
Shamrock Township124.908201.020 CSAH 3 / CSAH 14 – Palisade, Savanna Portage State ParkFormer MN 232[8][9]
MN 200 west – Hill City
Southern end of MN 200 overlap
MN 200 east – Floodwood
northern end of MN 200 overlap
ItascaSwan River153.704247.363 US 2 – Duluth, Grand Rapids
Greenway Township172.574277.731
US 169 south – Grand Rapids
Southern end of US 169 overlap
Lone Pine Township175.243282.026
US 169 north – Hibbing
Northern end of US 169 overlap
Carpenter Township208.147334.980
MN 1 west – Effie, Northome
Western end of MN 1 overlap
MN 1 east – Cook
Eastern end of MN 1 overlap
KoochichingEast Koochiching233.199375.297BIA 13 – Nett Lake
MN 217 east – Ray
East Koochiching270.739435.712 US 71 – International Falls, Bemidji
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi


  1. ^ Riner, Steve. "Details of Routes 51–75". The Unofficial Minnesota Highways Page. Retrieved June 24, 2004.
  2. ^ a b c "Statewide Trunk Highway Log Point Listing" (PDF). Minnesota Department of Transportation. November 6, 2013. p. 613. Retrieved November 24, 2013.
  3. ^ Froehlig, Adam. "Minnesota Highway 65". Minnesota State Highway Endings. Retrieved April 3, 2004.
  4. ^ "Savanna Portage State Park". Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
  5. ^ "Minneapolis City Council Approves 7 New Cultural Districts To Advance Equity, Fuel Economic Growth". CBS Minnesota. Minneapolis: WCCO-TV. August 14, 2020. Retrieved November 25, 2020.
  6. ^ "Cultural Districts ordinance (2020-00446)" (PDF). City of Minneapolis. August 22, 2020.
  7. ^ "City Council approves boundaries for seven new Cultural Districts" (Press release). City of Minneapolis. August 14, 2020. Retrieved December 14, 2020.
  8. ^ "Aitkin County Request for County Board Action" (PDF). Aitkin County Board of Commissioners. April 3, 2012. Retrieved November 24, 2013.
  9. ^ "Aitkin County Board Minutes April 2012" (PDF). Aitkin County Board of Commissioners. April 10, 2012. Retrieved November 24, 2013.

External links

Media related to Minnesota State Highway 65 at Wikimedia Commons