Needless to say, Minnesotans weren't too impressed to learn that the Twin Cities light rail will mostly only be available to Super Bowl ticket holders on Feb. 4.
Only part of the Green Line will run as usual on Super Bowl Sunday, with the rest of the line and the entire Blue Line available only to those in possession of a Super Bowl ticket and a $30 "Gameday Pass" light rail ticket.
That leaves regular light rail riders forced to take a rail replacement bus.
Following the furor that arose from the announcement, Metro Transit made a concession: the replacement buses will be free on Feb. 4 for all riders.
"We will offer free rides to any customer whose travel plans are disrupted and will be using our replacement buses on the day of the Super Bowl," Metro Transit said. "If a customer has already paid a fare and transfers to a replacement bus, they will be reimbursed with a fare coupon they can use on their next ride at a later date on Metro Transit."
Metro Transit added that all its Super Bowl transportation – including the light rail to the game and replacement bus services – will be paid through with "Super Bowl-related revenue and advertising," not from taxpayer money.
"We negotiated this gameday transit solution with Super Bowl partners and believe it is the least disruptive option over the events of this international event. We understand there will be some disruption on gameday, however this is a far better solution than the 96-hour partial rail shutdown, which was the initial mandate," Metro Transit said.
On gameday, replacement buses will run every 10-15 minutes along the Blue Line, and between Stadium Village and Target Field on the Green Line.
35 temporary bus shelters are also being added along the routes.