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12/2/2005



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Minneapolis' Hiawatha hits 10 million mark


Last week, Minneapolis’ Metro Transit carried its 10 millionth Hiawatha light-rail passenger — nine months ahead of schedule.

In June 2004, the agency, which operates Hiawatha service, opened the first phase of the 12-mile, 17-station line between downtown Minneapolis and Fort Snelling. Last December, Metro Transit opened the line’s second phase, serving Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport, Bloomington and the Mall of America.

Hiawatha ridership has exceeded original projections. The agency didn’t expect to carry its 10 millionth passenger until August 2006. In October, overall ridership was 67 percent above the initial projection; the agency carried an average of 26,200 passengers daily.


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