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Rail News: Passenger Rail

Minnesota governor signs bonding bill for Northstar project


It’s official. The Northstar Corridor Development Authority now can seek federal funds for Minnesota’s first commuter-rail line. Yesterday, Gov. Tim Pawlenty signed a bill that included $60 million in state bonding authority that, along with $37.5 million in bonds approved last year, will fulfill Minnesota’s 33 percent funding commitment for the $307.3 million project.

Local governments along the proposed 40-mile Minneapolis-to-Big Lake, Minn., line will finance 17 percent of project cost and the Federal Transit Administration is expected to provide a 50 percent funding match.

Under terms of a trackage agreement reached with BNSF Railway Co. last month, 12 weekday and three weekend trains would operate along the line, which is expected to open in 2009.

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More News from 6/2/2006