Thursday, January 24, 2013
The neighborhood would benefit from moving the proposed light rail station closer to Blake Road, but a development panel thought the area is a great spot for housing.
The Blake Station on the proposed Southwest Light Rail Transit line is a “prime site” for housing and has incredible development potential—but it will require the continued improvement of the Blake Road corridor that the city envisions. That’s the conclusion a panel of developers, market specialists and urban designers arrived at after a multi-part workshop examining five key station areas on the line: Mitchell and Golden Triangle stations in Eden Prairie, Blake Station in Hopkins, Beltline Station in St. Louis Park and Penn Station in Minneapolis. The panel also opted to look at the Town Center station in Eden Prairie. Click on the PDF to the right of this article to view the station locations. The goal of the Southwest Corridor …
Monday, January 14, 2013
Budget shortfalls and low ridership have put a portion of Route 670 on the chopping block.
A portion of Hopkins bus service is under consideration for reduction or consolidation because of budget shortfalls and low ridership, according to a report in this week’s City Council packet. Metro Transit is reviewing whether to eliminate the portion of Route 670 on Highway 7 between of 17th Avenue and County Road 101. The route is among five west metro bus routes in the area under review for consolidation—664, 665, 667E, 670 and 671. Click on the PDFs above to see a map of the proposed changes. The recommendations arise from a region-wide Metropolitan Council study of possible service reductions and consolidations in express bus operations. The routes identified have about 25 passengers per trip on average, with the evening average of …
Friday, May 11, 2012
TwinWest Chamber President Bruce Nustad issued a statement on behalf of five metro chambers.
(The following news release comes from The Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, Eden Prairie Chamber of Commerce, Edina Chamber of Commerce, Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce and TwinWest Chamber of Commerce.) The Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, Eden Prairie Chamber of Commerce, Edina Chamber of Commerce, Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce, and TwinWest Chamber of Commerce have been working together to secure state support for the Southwest Light Rail Transit line that would serve Minneapolis, St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka, and Eden Prairie. On behalf of the state’s five largest local Chambers of Commerce, TwinWest Chamber President Bruce Nustad issued the following statement: “The business community is disappointed…
Thursday, May 10, 2012
Susan Haigh criticized the Legislature’s refusal to set aside $25 million for Southwest Light Rail Transit in this year’s bonding bill.
Thursday, May 10, 2012
(Susan Haigh, chairwoman of the Metropolitan Council, released the following statement Thursday after the conclusion of this year's legislative session.) A bonding bill that omits Southwest Light Rail misses a tremendous opportunity for the state and the Twin Cities region. I’m disappointed that the Governor’s original bonding proposal was scaled back in a way that leaves out this important investment, which has the strong support of business and the six communities along the line. By leaving out Southwest Light Rail, the Legislature put up a serious impediment to private sector job creation along the corridor. The State of Minnesota must continue to make smart investments in critical public infrastructure projects for the region like …
Tuesday, May 8, 2012
The $496 million bill passed the House on a 99-32 vote and the Senate 45-22 Monday.
A late-hour contribution to the Southwest Light Rail Transit line is still not on the horizon. The bonding bills the state House and Senate signed off on Monday does not include the $25 million for Southwest LRT that supporters want. The money is to be part of a $125 million total state contribution to the project—which will run from Minneapolis to Eden Prairie, through suburban communities such as St. Louis Park, Hopkins and Minnetonka. Federal money and county funds that are required to be spent on transit would match that, including a federal share of $625 million. Gov. Mark Dayton included the $25 million in his $775 million bonding proposal at the beginning of this year’s legislative session, but the project has so far failed to gain …
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
The Met Council released a new video that offers a virtual look at the proposed transitway.
Want a better look at where the proposed Southwest Light Rail Transit line will run? On Monday, the Metropolitan Council released a nine-minute video that offers a guided tour of the route. Using Google Earth, the video takes viewers along the route approved to enter preliminary engineering—from Mitchell Station in Eden Prairie to Target Field Station in Minneapolis. Along the way, narration describes the stops, new infrastructure and other key features of the route. Southwest’s prospects before the Legislature remain uncertain—at least for this legislative session. Talks on the bonding bill that was to contain $25 million for light rail have broadened to cover projects as diverse as infrastructure for the Vikings stadium. But there is not…
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
The $25 million recommended for the project was not included in a Senate bonding bill, whose details were released Wednesday.
A Senate bonding bill whose details were released Wednesday morning does not include $25 million that Gov. Mark Dayton recommended for Southwest Light Rail Transit—leaving the project out of both that bill and the House version that representatives OK’d last week. The money was to be part of a $125 million total state contribution project. Federal money and county funds that are required to be spent on transit would match that, including a federal share of $625 million. Rail advocates say a state commitment is necessary to assure the federal government that Minnesota is on board with the project. Failure to set aside the money could put the project behind others across the country. But some opponents are wary about putting state money on …
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Hopkins ordinances prohibit vehicles from being parked on the street for longer than 24 hours.
Abbie Seba moved to Hopkins with her husband Jeffrey Seba so they could take the bus to work. Her husband also travels a lot for business. With so little driving, it’s not unusual for the Sebas’ family cars to go unused on the weekdays. Unfortunately for them, Hopkins ordinances prohibit vehicles from being parked on the street for longer than 24 hours. A month ago, the Sebas arrived to find a parking ticket on their car. “I feel like we are being penalized for taking public transportation,” Abbie Seba told the Hopkins council Tuesday. Police Chief Mike Reynolds wound up waiving the parking fine, but Seba thinks the city should reconsider parking limits. With the incoming Southwest Light Rail line, more and more people will choose public …
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
The survey questioned 700 voters across Minnesota, including 400 metro-area voters.
A survey commissioned by the state’s three largest chambers of commerce found more than six in 10 Minnesotans favor this year’s proposal to commit $25 million in state money to the Southwest Light Rail Transit line. “The strong support evidenced by this survey should add to the momentum in support of Southwest LRT,” a news release quoted TwinWest Chamber President Bruce Nustad. “We have a once in a generation opportunity to build a transportation network that will help us keep and grow jobs in our region. The business community will continue to play a major role backing this important project.” TwinWest, The Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce—which had all previously come out in support of …
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
Chamber leaders make their case for Southwest Light Rail Transit.
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
(Editor’s note: Todd Klingel is President of the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce. Matt Kramer is President of the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce. Bruce Nustad is President of the TwinWest Chamber of Commerce. They submitted the following piece to Patch.) In a recent opinion piece (“Light Rail 'Nothing Short of a Money Pit',” January 23), Mound City Councilmember David Osmek argues that the cost of extending the light rail system to the southwest suburbs is too high. But he ignores the dramatic costs of failing to provide much-needed transportation options in this critical corridor. The southwest corridor, from Minneapolis through St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Edina, Minnetonka, and Eden Prairie, is projected to add 60,000 new …