Building A Skunnel, 1996

March 18, 1996

A Bobcat operated by Jim Sargent levels the floor in the pool portion of the pedestrian tunnel under Fifth Avenue West in downtown Duluth. The room is about midway through the tunnel and will have a pool with a pedestrian bridge over it and a waterfall on the north wall. The tunnel, which will give the Radisson Hotel access to the rest of downtown’s skywalk, will be open this tourist season. (Charles Curtis / News-Tribune)

I’ve always thought it was odd to walk on a part of the skywalk … while I was underground. I had never heard the term before, but stories in the archives referred to the passages as "skunnels" – skywalk tunnels.

Here are a couple more photos:

Fifth Avenue West from Superior Street to First Alley in downtown Duluth is closed on Sept. 13, 1995, as crews continue excavating for a tunnel from the Radisson Hotel to the KDLH-TV lower parking lot. (Charles Curtis / News-Tribune)


Karen Haavisto (left) heads toward the Radisson as she passes another walker in the new Fifth Avenue West tunnel on Oct. 30, 1996. The tunnel opened that week. (Josh Meltzer / News-Tribune)