It only takes a few clicks of your mouse to go back in time on this busy Rochester road, thanks to a weird glitch in Google Maps.

I was using Google Maps the other day to see just how long a drive it was going to be from Rochester to Red Wing (53 minutes via Highways 52 and 58 and County Road 1, by the way, with light traffic) when I noticed a strange glitch in their Street View feature.

I find it actually pretty impressive that Google Maps has pretty much taken a picture of just about every road, street and highway pretty much anywhere and has stitched them together in one handy program. I use Google Maps ALL. THE. TIME.

But every now and again, even their impressive algorithm is subject to the limits of when they last sent that cute little Google Maps car around-- the one with the panoramic camera mounted on its top-- to get updated pictures of various streets and roads.

And when you live in an area where there's a lot of development-- like we do here in Rah-Rah-Rochester-- sometimes a click or two on Google Maps can take you back in time. Like along this stretch of West Circle Drive in northwest Rochester. In the first picture above, which itself is from 2017 and is already 2 years old, you can see all the businesses that have been there, near Costco. Like McDonald's, Aldi, the two hotels and Five West.

Google Street View

But when you click your mouse just one click west along West Circle, you're transported back to September of... 2012! Check out that second picture-- there aren't any other businesses in that shot, and Costco is still under construction! But make a few more clicks west, and you're back to 2018.

Why that tiny stretch of West Circle Drive is still existing back in 2012 (at least as far as Google Maps is concerned) is kind of a puzzle-- but it's kind of cool to see!

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