METRO Blue Line Extension
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METRO Blue Line Extension

October 13, 2019

The Blue Line Extension
LRT project, a planned extension of the
METRO Blue Line, will serve the communities of
Minneapolis, Golden Valley, Crystal, Robbinsdale, and
Brooklyn Park. It will be part of an
integrated system of transitways including
connections to the METRO
Green Line, the Northstar commuter
rail line, and local bus service. The eleven new stations along
the thirteen-mile line will provide access to thousand
of jobs as well as growing residential
areas, and will attract new commercial
development. The lines northern end will be
Oak Grove Parkway Station in
Brooklyn Park. This station will be located in
a rapidly developing area near the intersection of
Highway 169 and Highway 610 and Target Corporations
North Campus. A new park-and-ride structure with space for nine hundred
vehicles will be built at the station, and the station site will
accommodate future development. South of Oak Grove Parkway, the Blue Line Extension will
cross Highway 610 on a new bridge on the
west side of West Broadway Avenue. Approaching 93rd Avenue Station, light rail trains will
transition to running between the northbound and
southbound lanes. This will require concurrent
reconstruction of West
Broadway Avenue between 94th Avenue and
74th Avenue to accommodate light rail and
improve traffic flow. Traffic signals along
West Broadway Avenue will have safety features
so light rail trains can operate at street level. 93rd Avenue Station will be located in the center
of West Broadway Avenue. Crosswalks at each end
of the station allow transit riders to safely
access the station platform. The 85th Avenue Station is south of the new
Brooklyn Park Library. This station will also provide
convenient transit access for North Hennepin
Community College students, and residents of
nearby neighborhoods. Continuing south the line
will cross Brooklyn Boulevard and enter the station. Many businesses and restaurants
are located nearby, around the intersection of West
Broadway and Brooklyn Boulevard The Blue Line Extension will
cross 75th Avenue at street level and then
turn slightly west. The intersection between
74th Avenue and Jolly Lane will be closed. Trains will cross over
73rd Avenue and County Road 81 / Bottineau
Boulevard on a new bridge, and enter the B-N-S-F
freight rail corridor then cross West Broadway
Avenue again at street level. At all street level crossings,
gate arms and flashing lights will warn drivers when
trains are approaching. The Blue Line Extension will
continue to follow the B-N-S-F freight rail corridor south
through Brooklyn Park, Crystal, Robbinsdale and
Golden Valley. Trains will pass under
Interstate 94 on the way to 63rd
Avenue Station A covered walkway will
connect the new LRT Station to the existing Metro Transit
park-and-ride at Bottineau Boulevard
and 63rd Avenue. The two-level parking structure
holds more than 550 vehicles, and includes covered
bicycle racks. Leaving the station, trains
will cross 63rd Avenue at street level and enter
the city of Crystal near North Lions Park. Blue Line Extension trains
will pass Crystal Airport on the way to Bass Lake
Road Station. The light rail tracks will cross Bass Lake Road at
street level Bass Lake Road Station will
be located near Becker Park and existing residential and
commercial area. The station will include a
park-and-ride lot with space for 150 vehicles. South of the station, light
rail trains will travel over the Canadian Pacific freight
railroad on a new bridge. Trains will then cross
Corvallis Avenue at street level. Gate arms and flashing lights
will warn drivers when a train is approaching. The intersection of West
Broadway Avenue and Lakeside Avenue will be reconfigured
with a traffic circle, and gate arms to warn
drivers of approaching trains. The Blue Line Extension
will continue to follow the BNSF freight rail corridor along West Broadway
Avenue into Robbinsdale. Trains will cross 45th Avenue
in Robbinsdale at street level. Gate arms and warning
lights will protect drivers and pedestrians. Trains will cross Highway
100 on a new bridge, then cross 42nd Avenue
at street level and enter Robbinsdale Station. Robbinsdale Station will be
just north of the existing Robbinsdale Transit
Center. A new park and ride structure
will be constructed And existing bus services
will be relocated for easier connections to
and from the LRT station. South of the station,
the street-level crossing of 41st Avenue North will have gate arms and
warning lights. The rail crossing at 39 1/2
Avenue will be closed. The rail corridor curves
around Lee Park, and passes under 36th
Avenue, then continues south. As the rail corridor enters
Sochacki [so-HACK-ee] Park, trains will cross over
wetlands on a new bridge and then enter Golden Valley, traveling along the eastern edge of the Mary Hills Nature Area. Light rail trains will cross
wetlands on a new bridge, and then pass under
Golden Valley Road to enter Golden Valley
Road Station A new park-and-ride lot
with space for approximately 90 vehicles
will be between Golden Valley Road and
Theodore Wirth Parkway and served by new trail
connections. Light rail trains will travel
along the eastern edge of the park to Plymouth Avenue
Theodore Wirth Park Station, located just east of the
parks chalet and golf course. Trains will pass under Plymouth
Avenue and continue south. Approaching Olson Memorial
Highway the Blue Line Extension will pass under the highways
elevated westbound lanes then leave the freight rail
corridor and turn east, running between the highways eastbound and westbound lanes. Penn Avenue Station will be
located in the existing median between the eastbound and
westbound lanes of Olson Memorial Highway. Crosswalks and traffic signals
at both ends of the platform will enable customers to
access the station safely from either side
of the highway. Continuing east at street level, trains will pass Harrison Park and enter Van White
Boulevard Station the last new station before
connecting with the existing Blue Line stations
in downtown Minneapolis. Customers will be able to enter
the platform via crosswalks with traffic signals at Van
White Memorial Boulevard and Bryant Avenue. Trains will continue between
eastbound and westbound lanes of Olson Memorial Highway across Interstate 94 to
Seventh Street, where the highway
becomes Sixth Avenue. The LRT tracks will then shift to the south side of
Sixth Avenue. As the line approaches Target
Field Station, it will pass under the
elevated tracks of the METRO Green Line
Extension. The LRT lines converge at
Target Field Station, Blue Line Extension
trains will continue east and south as the METRO
Blue Line. Riders will also be able to
connect to the Northstar commuter rail and
bus routes. Without changing trains,
riders will be able to reach Blue Line destinations in
downtown Minneapolis, south Minneapolis, and
Bloomington including the VA Medical Center, the Minneapolis-St. Paul
International Airport, and the Mall of America. At any of the downtown stations
riders will be able to connect to the METRO
Green Line eastbound to the University
of Minnesota, St. Pauls Midway area, and
downtown St. Paul or westbound to Saint Louis
Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka, and Eden Prairie. Project partners include the
Federal Transit Administration, Counties Transit Improvement
Board, state of Minnesota and Hennepin County
Regional Railroad Authority and the cities of Brooklyn Park
Crystal, Robbinsdale, Golden Valley and Minneapolis. For more information, visit Blue Line E-X-T dot O-R-G.

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