Bracing for a Minnesota Mayhem holiday weekend

The Minneapolis park police have preemptively closed the iconic Stone Arch Bridge during overnight hours through July 5.

Independent journalist Rebecca Brannon reports on the mayhem occurring this week that prompted the move. She has video.

Authorities are also expecting more of the mayhem that occurred last July 4th when there were shootings and the firing of illegal fireworks in the area of downtown along the banks of the Mississippi River.

Video of fireworks being shot out of moving vehicles like mortar rounds aimed toward local apartment dwellers circled the globe that week.

Park police have erected concrete jersey barriers and chain link fencing at each end of the bridge. Looking towards downtown,

The chain link gate will presumably be shut from dusk until dawn. The bridge was originally built in 1883 to carry the Great Northern railroad over St. Anthony Falls. It’s been converted to a pedestrian and bicycle path connecting a series of riverside parks on both banks.

Officially closed to automobiles, the bridge is occasionally used for local access by emergency vehicles. It will be closed for all uses from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m.

On the downtown side, the park police have installed a surveillance camera at the foot of the bridge.

The bridge looks out over some pretty pricey real estate. The condo tower in the center of this photo was designed by the firm of celebrity architect Robert AM Stern. Individual units in the building sell for millions of dollars.

The building is called “Eleven” and, coincidentally, the Minneapolis Star Tribune today offers a tour inside one $6.5 million penthouse unit for sale. The Star Tribune reports that building residents (100 of 120 units have already sold) can watch the chaos in comfort,

Building amenities include an outdoor lounge with a lap pool, a sports court, fitness center, billiards room and golf simulator. It also houses a library, board room, entertaining spaces (including a demo-style kitchen, formal dining and lounge areas that can be booked for private parties) and round-the-clock concierge services.

Here is a photo of Eleven that I took a year ago,

The bridge itself offers panoramic views of the city. Looking towards downtown,

And the falls,

Happy 4th of July, everyone!