Southwest Light Rail Transit

Green Line Extension – Eden Prairie to Downtown Minneapolis

The Southwest Light Rail Transit (LRT) project (METRO Green Line Extension) will operate from downtown Minneapolis through the communities of St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka, and Eden Prairie, passing in close proximity to Edina. The proposed alignment includes 16 new stations and approximately 16 miles of double track. It will be part of an integrated system of transitways, including connections to the METRO Blue Line, the Northstar Commuter Rail line, bus routes and proposed future transitways. The total project cost of $1.7 billion will be funded through a mix of federal, state and local sources, with federal funds making up approximately half the total. 

Latest News

Council approved the Southwest LRT (METRO Green Line Extension) to serve existing transportation needs and accommodate forecasted growth in jobs and households in the Southwest Corridor.

Planners recommended building shallow tunnels for light rail tracks and an LRT bridge over a channel between two lakes, as well as keeping Mitchell Station as the westernmost station.  

The Metropolitan Council released two draft reports prepared by independent consultants to examine important issues that affect the Southwest LRT Project.

The fourth issue of Extending Tracks, the Southwest LRT Project newsletter, has been published. 



The route of the Green Line Extension was initially established through the adoption of the “Locally Preferred Alternative” (LPA) by the Metropolitan Council in May 2010.  During Project Development phase, alignment adjustments to the LPA route were made to improve transit operations and accommodate local conditions. The adjusted LPA route was approved by the Metropolitan Council as part of its approval of scope and budget in April 2014.

The Southwest LRT Project Office prepared this narrated visualization of the Locally Preferred Alternative route in 2012, showing an aerial view of the route from Eden Prairie to downtown Minneapolis. This visualization does not reflect adjustments made to the LPA during Project Development. The visualization will be updated in 2014.

Project Status

On April 9, 2014, the Metropolitan Council approved the scope and budget for the Southwest LRT(Green Line Extension) Project. As required by Minnesota’s “municipal consent” law (Minn. Stat. 473.3994), the municipalities along the project route and Hennepin County will review preliminary design plans and vote to approve or disapprove the plans.

The Southwest LRT Project is currently in the Project Development phase of the Federal Transit Administration’s New Starts funding process. The next phase is Engineering, which is scheduled to begin in 2015. Heavy construction is scheduled to take place between 2016 and 2018. The Project will begin passenger service as an extension of the METRO Green Line in 2019.