Met Council Approves Changes to Proposed SWLRT Route in Minneapolis

Updated: 07/09/2014 7:23 PM KSTP.com By: Brad Sattin

The Met Council approved changes to the SWLRT route in Minneapolis.
The Met Council approved changes to the SWLRT route in Minneapolis.
Photo: Photo: KSTP/File

The Metropolitan Council approved changes to the proposed Southwest Light Rail Transit project route along the Kenilworth Corridor in Minneapolis.

The city and Met Council announced the deal Tuesday. It will eliminate the proposed train tunnel north of the channel that connects Cedar Lake and Lake of the Isles. The change also adds a train stop at 21st Street and saves around $30 million in construction costs.

Residents opposed to the line complain there haven’t been enough environmental impact studies. Some residents are even threatening to file lawsuits in hopes of derailing the project.

The 15-mile train line, estimated to cost $1.7 billion to build, would run from Target Field in downtown Minneapolis through St. Louis Park, Minnetonka, Hopkins and Eden Prairie.

So far, Minnetonka and Hopkins have approved the plan. More votes are scheduled. Eden Prairie and St. Louis Park will vote on July 14. Hennepin County Commissioners have approved all of the route, except the Minneapolis portion. A vote is scheduled for August 19, and the Minneapolis City Council is scheduled to vote August 29.