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6/27/2007



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Minneapolis' Metropolitan Council to award preliminary engineering contract for Central Corridor light-rail line



Minneapolis’ Metropolitan Council recently obtained board approval to award a contract totaling up to $35.5 million to DMJM Harris to conduct preliminary engineering on the Central Corridor light-rail line.

The 11-mile corridor will link downtown St. Paul and Minneapolis through the State Capitol area, Midway and the University of Minnesota East Bank. Scheduled to open in 2014, the line would connect with the Hiawatha light-rail system at the Metrodome station.

The preliminary engineering process will help the Metropolitan Council determine where to build stations and how to reduce the project’s nearly $1 billion cost by $200 million to meet federal cost-effectiveness standards. The agency hopes to obtain federal funding approval in 2009 and begin construction in 2010.

Meanwhile, Central Corridor LRT Project officials recently hired four community outreach coordinators. The coordinators, who know seven languages and are assigned to serve specific geographic areas along the ethnically diverse route, are: Nkongo Ciglo, former outreach coordinator for the Rural Integrated Development Program of Africa; Jessica Hill, a support services staffer for the National institute of Health Policy; Shoua Lee, a project manager and loan specialist for the city of St. Paul’s Department of Planning and Economic Development; and Rita Rodriguez, executive director for the Association of Women Contractors.




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