St. Louis Park residents skeptical about Southwest light rail plan

  • Article by: Pat Doyle , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 9, 2014 - 9:12 PM

Seeking to calm critics, Southwest Corridor planners unveiled the latest efforts to find an acceptable approach to rerouting freight trains for light rail.

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mnpls123Jan. 9, 14 9:18 PM

Rerouting freight rail is in the strategic land use plan on the SLP website with a note that the freight will eventually be rerouted. Not certain why they are whining about it.

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crazygolfguyJan. 9, 14 9:24 PM

Reroute the bike trail along the edge of Cedar Lake to make way for the light rail and freight rail. Because we would save so much money, throw in a pedestrian lane too. Problem solved!!

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topekat70Jan. 9, 14 9:34 PM

I'm quite tired of this dispute. How about we eliminate the suburbs from this route and use the money saved to build light rail to Uptown and stop there.

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mspreader1Jan. 9, 14 9:54 PM

@mnpls123--- it may be in the plan, but certainly not as proposed...regardless, it's not like the kenilworth residents have any more valid of an argument. Putting freight trains on 20 ft berms in a residential area is asinine...to state otherwise is pure ignorance. Kenilworth neighbors are grasping about perceived change....not safety.

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huggybear28Jan. 9, 14 9:57 PM

A reality check is needed here. If SWLRT is going to happen, a resolution needs to occur otherwise the money should go elsewhere. Spending hundreds of millions on tunnels is not fiscally responsible and only takes away money that could fund improvements elsewhere. The railroads still have more power than the actual state due to federal laws from the 1800's. Even if SLP agrees to the reroute, most likely there is not going to be a route that the railroad can move to that they would find acceptable that comes with a reasonable cost. Due to federal law, the railroad (not the state) has the ultimate decision on this move. They are not going to give up the corridor unless the new route is better than the old one.

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ckrbkierJan. 9, 1410:09 PM

Why are Minneapolis residents described as "griping" while St. Louis Park residents are "skeptical"? Very biased reporting.

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dr4golfJan. 9, 1410:34 PM

As a neglected burb, this is a waste of time and money. Spend it on more roads and bridges please!!

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DLBabatzJan. 9, 1410:51 PM

This reporter certainly is not biased toward the SLP point of view. He consistently calls the Kenilworth Rail Corridor a recreation area.

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honeybooJan. 9, 1411:15 PM

Kill this project already. My god, no one wants it except for the Met Council. Go away. Find another boondoggle like a stadium, or extending the Northstar Rail deeper to nowhere.

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geomplsJan. 9, 1411:27 PM

Four or five bicyclists spoke up at the St. Louis Park meeting. Their message was that they didn't care if the bike paths had to be rerouted to make room for putting the light-rail and the freight railroad above ground in the Kenilworth corridor. The paths could be rerouted with bridges at the narrow points of the corridor or on city streets (if we can put a bike path on Washington Ave in downtown as recently reported on in the StarTribune, we can use streets with bike lanes between Cedar and Isles). Or, as suggested at the meeting and as noted in one of the first comments here, we could route a bike path along the east side of Cedar Lake, including through the Park Board Land between the houses on Park Lane and Cedar Lake. The bicyclists and bicycle paths are not the problem. Nearly every bicyclist that has commented in the many articles about this issue on startribune.com has stated that the bike paths can and should be rerouted. Build the light rail along side the freight; a different, parallel route can be made nearby for bikes.. Save $300 to 500 million for the taxpayers. Do not blame bicyclists or bike trails for a decision that spends an extra 500 million or for a decision that shifts freight rail through St.Louis Park, where it does not belong.

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