Skyway window comes crashing down onto Hennepin Avenue

It was still unclear Monday why a large window pane crashed onto Hennepin Avenue in downtown Minneapolis from a skyway that wrapped up a multimillion-dollar overhaul only a year ago.

The pane, just over 15 feet high and 4 feet wide, came free about 4:15 p.m. Friday, and traffic cones remained around bits of glass Sunday below the skyway connecting two Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) buildings in the 1400 block of S. Hennepin Avenue.

No injuries or other property damage were reported.

“We are unsure what caused the window pane to fall,” Deanna Sheely, MCTC’s vice president of advancement and marketing communication, said Monday. “We have found no signs of foul play.”

She said the skyway, which connects a parking ramp with the school’s technical building, remained passable and functional because the glass is two-pane “and only the exterior glass pane broke. The interior pane is still in place.”

Last year’s $3.8 million makeover of the skyway, funded by the state, was meant to strengthen the structural integrity where joints and seals had failed and were allowing rainwater to cause deterioration, college officials said. MCTC celebrated the renovation of the skyway in October 2019 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

There has been less traffic in the skyway of late because the number of students, faculty members and staffers on campus is down owing to the pandemic, Sheely said. “Most courses and services are being delivered in online formats,” she said.

 

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