ST. PAUL, Minn. – June 26, 2013 – The Metropolitan Council today voted to award PCL Construction Services a nearly $1.8 million contract to build a stairway-elevator tower to connect the skyway spanning Central Station to the sidewalk below it.
The skyway spans the downtown St. Paul station between Cedar and Minnesota streets, and the stairway-elevator tower will connect the skyway to the Fifth Street sidewalk below it. Construction will begin before fall to allow for completion of the project before Central Corridor LRT (Green Line) service begins in mid-2014. Funding will come from an $800,000 federal grant received by Metro Transit and $969,620 from the Central Corridor LRT Project budget.
“Few public entries exist into the skyway system in downtown St. Paul, making this project a benefit not only for the Green Line but also other transit riders, pedestrians and the disability community,” Metropolitan Council Chair Sue Haigh said.
“From the time we knew the existing skyway would be removed with the demolition of the Bremer Bank building, the city has worked with the Metropolitan Council to establish a link between street and skyway at this important intersection of light rail and bus transit in the core of downtown,” Mayor Chris Coleman said. “The city has worked with a public artist, Jo Ann Verberg, to incorporate art into the structure and to make it a beautiful part of downtown’s public realm. Equally important is providing a means for people at all mobility levels to enjoy all that downtown has to offer.”
In May, the Met Council approved a non-binding memorandum of understanding with the city and the St. Paul Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) to facilitate redevelopment of the Central Station block where the vacant Bremer Bank was demolished to make room for the LRT line and the station. The Met Council also approved an easement agreement with the St. Paul HRA for bus passenger waiting improvements and an operations and maintenance agreement with the city for the stairway-elevator tower. Metro Transit and the city negotiated to split the tower’s approximate $75,000 annual operations and maintenance cost.
The stairway-elevator tower project has a 15.5 percent Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) goal. PCL, the low responsive bidder among five bidders, passed the DBE review. PCL also built the line’s operations and maintenance facility in Lowertown.
News Release - June 26, 2013