Skip to main content

All aboard! With Minneapolis vote, all 5 cities have approved SW light rail plan

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

The long-discussed plan to bring a light rail line to the southwest metro suburbs has had a number of key moments over the years – but Friday morning marked one of most crucial.

With a 10-3 vote, the Minneapolis City Council gave its final approval to the 16-mile line that would run from downtown Minneapolis to Eden Prairie, clearing the track for the project to move forward.

Planners now hope to complete the $1.6 billion rail line, said to be the most expensive transit project in state history, by 2019.

Five cities needed to offer their final approval to the plan for it to move forward, and four had already offered it: Eden Prairie, St. Louis Park, Hopkins and Minnetonka.

Minneapolis on Friday became the fifth city when the Council voted after about an hour of debate. Minneapolis Council Members Barb Johnson, Cam Gordon and Lisa Goodman were the three members who voted against the approval, the Star Tribune notes.

The plan remains controversial. Some city leaders have had resentments over how money for the project would be doled out to different municipalities.

Other long-standing concerns have included worries about the route, proposed tunnels and the project's impact on the environment.

"We would essentially be taking an action today not knowing whether or not this shallow tunnel, which is to be built between 18 and 20 feet below the water level, will have an impact on our lakes and environment," Goodman said, KARE 11 noted.

The project is being funded with a mix of federal, state and local sources, with about half from federal funds. The 17-station line is being planned as an extension of the newly opened Green Line route, which connects the downtowns of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

Construction is expected to begin in 2016.

Next Up

Patrick Henry High School

Patrick Henry High School in Minneapolis will get new name

A school board meeting was held this week, discussing what's next going forward.

Mike Max

Sources: Mike Max is out at WCCO Radio

Max got his start at WCCO Radio in 1998.

Pixabay - emergency room ambulance hospital

Uber passenger dies a week after fiery crash in St. Paul

Her Uber was struck by a suspected drunk-driver.

target

Target profits plunge as it takes hit from shedding excess goods

The retailer announced earlier this year it would be slashing prices.

police lights

Las Vegas man identified as victim killed near 38th and Chicago

The 25-year-old died at the scene Sunday afternoon.

unnamed-5

Beloved Eagan Dairy Queen says goodbye

A summer staple has shuttered in Eagan.

Screen Shot 2022-08-16 at 3.44.22 PM (2)

Bridge damage closes westbound Hwy. 62 between Richfield, Edina

The Minnesota Department of Transportation said bridge maintenance work is in progress.

Michael Miller

Charges: Drunk driver killed former chair of Hibbing Chamber of Commerce

Michael Miller's blood-alcohol content was nearly three times the legal limit at the time of the crash.

Related

All aboard! The Blue Line light rail extension is moving ahead

Construction on the line could begin next year.