In a national report, 'the Sierra Club North Star Chapter highlighted the need to move beyond oil, and (explained) why the Southwest LRT is an example of the kind of projects Minnesotans need to move beyond dirty tar sands oil from Canada.'
Thursday, December 20, 2012
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.
(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, February 8, 2012
Chamber leaders make their case for Southwest Light Rail Transit.
(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 …
Monday, January 23, 2012
Mound City Councilman and state Senate candidate David Osmek takes a look at light-rail funding.
(Editor’s note: David Osmek has served on the Mound City Council since 2001 and is running for a state Senate seat this year. He's also a critic of light-rail projects—such as the Southwest Light Rail Transit line that most local leaders support. In the interest of balance, Patch invited Osmek to submit a guest column detailing the reasons he’s critical of light rail.) *** Some politicians are more than happy to jump on the bandwagon for the next extension of light rail in Minnesota: The SouthWest line. But what are the true costs? And can we actually afford it? I have done some analysis of the costs, and have come to the conclusion that any way you look at it, building more light rail lines makes no sense. Let’s take the Hiawatha line…