Adam Platt: Southwest commuter rail

  • Article by: Adam Platt
  • Updated: August 10, 2013 - 9:44 PM

It shouldn’t go away, and it needn’t, but there are other ways it could exist in that space.

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pumiceAug. 10, 13 6:13 PM

From the article: "Many of my well-traveled neighbors have been to New York and ... [t]hey’ve seen the High Line." This less well-traveled non-Kenwood resident has seen NYCity's High Line and recommends it highly. From what I've been reading on this issue, co-location is the best solution.

courtney38Aug. 10, 13 7:06 PM

I bought my house on the Kenilworth Greenway in the last year with the understanding that LRT would be in my backyard but NOT both. Nearly a million people a year enjoy the Kenilworth Greenway every year from around Minnesota. To say it is not "precious green space" is a mistake. I invite Adam Platt to join me for tea in my backyard any weekend morning as countless bikers, runners and walkers enjoy the trail. We have limited green space yet the Chain of Lakes is the most used park system in the state. Don't destroy it because of poor planning.

jbpaperAug. 10, 13 8:19 PM

"If there’s any single question that west metro residents should be asking their elected officials today, it’s why these costs were not tabulated when route analysis took place, and why that assessment took two additional years from the time the Federal Transit Administration ordered the region to consider TC&W’s needs as part of the project." ------ Actually ALL residents should be asking that question, not just those in the west metro. I have a pretty good idea of what the answer is, although I doubt they would ever admit it. Had they figured in these costs, they wouldn't have gotten as much local support and there's a good chance they wouldn't have received the federal money. A slight twist on the old bait and switch scheme.

cjkmyersAug. 10, 13 8:56 PM

courtney38 ... You bought a house along a transit cooridor and are now mad that it will continue to be used for trains. I would like to invite you to my friends house which will be razed to put the train through SLP. I would like to invite you my children's school where the twenty foot wall will be built sacrificing their playground and amplifying the sound that will disrupt their classrooms. I have run and biked by your house along the transit cooridor it has always been. I am sorry you were duped by the previous owner.

Rama2Aug. 10, 13 9:25 PM

While I applauded Adam Platt for being flexible and reasonable with what he feels his neighborhood has been dealt, I still don't understand why the Kenwood community does not insist that the only reasonable route for SWLRT is through UPTOWN! Both SLP and Kenwood communities should be fighting for that rational solution, rather than be pitted one against the other...

psc56stribAug. 10, 13 9:55 PM

It doesn't take a lot of reading between the lines to understand what the Feds are saying and not saying about this project. The Federal Government isn't going to pay half the cost to reroute TC&W or for a LRT tunnel. The metro area transit leaders are also starting to question their funding and Governor Dayton is even expressing concerns. When Dayton is questioning the financial rationality of a project, it has real problems. If Minneapolis will not approve surface level LRT next to the freight railroad, this project is dead. Either approve a project that can be funded and built or kill it and move on.

hobie2Aug. 10, 1310:30 PM

bury it from Target Field to Eden Prairie - cheaper (yes, cheaper), leaves the surface use alone, and most of the urban transportation planners of the woprld who are not on the Metro LRT payroll can't be that wrong... Crew of 20 people, 18 months from start of dig to end of dig -- rail unaffected by weather, maintenance is much less... but the downside is that it does cost the taxpayers less.

DLBabatzAug. 10, 1310:37 PM

@courtney38. What you apparently don't yet know is that the Kenilworth Corridor has been a RAIL corridor for over 100 years. Years ago, it was purchased by the Hennepin County RAILROAD Authority to preserve it as a RAIL corridor. It is not owned by any Park Board. The bike trail was allowed to be built in this RAIL corridor because bikes don't interfere with rail operations. There is no proposal to remove bikes from this RAIL corridor, albeit one option that is unfortunately not under serious consideration does detour the bike trail for 4-5 blocks around a very short narrow section. Adam's suggestions makes more sense than what we've been recently hearing from the Met Council, Mpls leaders, and local neighborhood leaders.

bleavitAug. 10, 1311:14 PM

hobie2, Is a tunnel really cheaper to maintain than surface rail? Where's your data? Also, I question your figures for the tunnel construction, is that one or two(needed) tunnels? What about underground stations? I have difficulty rationalizing your claims on expense.

firefight41Aug. 11, 13 8:05 AM

As the cost and logistical problems related to the Southwest light-rail proposal mount, it’s becoming ever more difficult to separate insurmountable from perceived hurdles and understand what is going on. Given that spiraling costs threaten both the project’s state support and federal funding ranking, the goal now should be to bring that cost back within anticipated margins. ***************** The thing to do now is to cancel the project


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