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FTA unveils final environmental statement for Minneapolis' Blue Line extension


The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the Metropolitan Council late last week released a final environmental impact statement for a proposed extension of Metro Transit's Blue Line from Minneapolis to Brooklyn Park, Minn.

The 13-mile route would extend from downtown Minneapolis through Golden Valley, Robbinsdale, Crystal and Brooklyn Park, Minn. The project's capital cost is an estimated $1.5 billion, according to the statement's executive summary.

Construction activity on 271 parcels of land may encounter contaminated soil or groundwater, the summary stated. Of these, 24 have a "high potential for contamination."

The project — which is also known as the Bottineau light-rail transit project — calls for building 11 new stations and adding more than 1,600 park-and-ride spaces at four new lots. In addition, Metro Transit would create new local bus routes or or restructure existing ones to connect the extension to nearby residential and commercial areas.

Metro Transit and the Metropolitan Council, which oversees the agency, will continue receiving public comment on the final environmental impact statement through Aug. 15.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 7/18/2016