Messages from the Council Chair

We’re adapting during COVID-19 to best serve the region

April 2020

In the Twin Cities region, we are all working together to meet the challenges of the global COVID-19 pandemic. At the Met Council, we’re adapting our programs and infrastructure to best serve people during a difficult time.

Our wastewater treatment plants continue to work, 24/7, to provide the service that more than 2.6 million people in the region depend on to protect public health and the environment.

While most Minnesotans are being told to stay home, we recognize that many essential workers rely on transit to get to their jobs.  We’re adapting Metro Transit’s service to ensure that we can provide the best service possible during this crisis.

We’re asking riders to take only essential trips, especially trips to jobs that keep vital services operating. Pharmacists, grocery store workers, and health care workers don’t have the option to stay home, and many of these workers depend on transit.

For those who must ride, we are ensuring our service continues by reducing hours of operation so we have adequate staffing and time to thoroughly clean our vehicles. We are asking riders to board at the back door of buses to protect our operators and riders from exposure. And we’re ensuring that our buses are not crowded. If a transit vehicle has too many people to maintain safe social distancing, we will add another behind it so people can spread out.

Metro Mobility and Transit Link may not be moving as many passengers, but they are being used to deliver groceries to the homes of people who are more vulnerable to COVID-19 and should not be going out.

And there has never been a time when so many people have been so appreciative of the world-class regional park system the Met Council has helped to build and maintain. Get out there and enjoy walking and biking, just remember to practice social distancing. We have 64 regional parks and special recreation features. There’s always a quiet, uncrowded place to go.

One of the Met Council’s core missions is regional planning, and COVID-19 is hammering home the truism that no plan completely survives contact with reality.  While this region is adapting to the crisis, we are also learning about our strengths and weaknesses. Moving forward, we will incorporate the lessons we are learning into more robust regional plans.

We will emerge from this as a stronger, more resilient region.

So, wash your hands, stay home, and stay well.

Updated information about our response to COVID-19