Weekly Construction Update

Construction Hotline

For urgent Southwest LRT construction issues, please call the 24-hour hotline at 612-373-3933 for assistance.  Call the hotline for problems such as blocked access to business or residential areas, improper traffic sign placement or parking issues. For general questions or comments about Southwest LRT, contact your Community Outreach Coordinator.

For emergencies, always call 911.

Construction Activity Updates

The Met Council provides information on construction activities every Friday throughout construction. Subscribe to receive construction activity updates by email or text.

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Southwest LRT Construction Update

2021 Construction and Going Forward

As announced on Thursday, over the course of the 2020 construction season, the project staff and our contractor, Lunda-McCrossan Joint Venture encountered unforeseen obstacles in the Minneapolis portion of the alignment which will take longer to overcome. These obstacles include the construction of the corridor protection wall along the BNSF fright rail line and a secant wall to complete LRT tunnel construction in a portion of the Kenilworth corridor due to poor soil conditions. These are no small changes and require thoughtful and deliberate engineering, design plans and construction methods. While these types of setbacks are not uncommon on projects of this scale, we are also disappointed by this development. We strongly believe the long-term benefits of this project to the region and state outweigh the short-term challenges we face. While this means we most likely won’t be meeting our opening day projection of 2023, we know that 2021 will be a robust construction year. 
To see an overview of 2021 construction activities in Minneapolis, view the recording of the January 14 Minneapolis Town Hall. We will be sharing 2021 overviews of construction activities in the corridor cities of Eden Prairie, Minnetonka, Hopkins, and St. Louis Park in the coming weeks.

 

Weekly Construction Photo: SouthWest Station in Eden Prairie  

Looking east towards SouthWest Station construction crews install piles that will support the bus loop/roadway. Due to poor soils conditions, project elements including track, stations, roadway and utilities are supported by piles.

Eden Prairie

There are two Eden Prairie maps with each illustrating where construction crews are working today and approximately through December. General activities are highlighted for your convenience. Please refer to text descriptions in this section for more details on major elements being constructed in specific areas.  

SouthWest Station to Eden Prairie Town Center Station
Construction Overview: At the SouthWest Station we are constructing a new park-and-ride ramp adjacent to the existing ramp and a combined bus and LRT station. Moving east, the Prairie Center Drive LRT Bridge extends from the SouthWest Station area over Technology Drive and Prairie Center Drive. Moving east, LRT will enter the Eden Prairie Town Center Station area.
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • The right-turn lane on the eastbound Highway 212 ramp to Prairie Center Drive remains closed.
  • The SouthWest station area remains a busy construction site with ongoing piling and concrete work.
  • Finishing details, such as railings, are being added to the Prairie Center Drive LRT bridge. With the structure complete, LRT tracks will be pulled onto the bridge next spring.
  • Sidewalks near the intersection of Prairie Center Drive and Technology Drive remain closed, please follow signage to ensure your safety. (See the SouthWest pedestrian detour map).
  • Construction continues at the Eden Prairie Town Center Station; the structural steel of the station has been emerging over the last weeks.

 
LRT Bridge at I-494 to Shady Oak Road
Construction Overview: In this portion of Eden Prairie, a LRT bridge will cross over I-494, parallel to Flying Cloud Drive; this bridge is almost complete. Flying Cloud Drive is being reconstructed and LRT track installed. LRT will travel on bridges over Flying Cloud Drive and Nine Mile Creek. The Golden Triangle Station is being constructed as well as an LRT bridge over Shady Oak Road and Highway 212.
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Minor bridge detailing work and some ongoing utility work near I-494.

Minnetonka

This Minnetonka map illustrates where construction crews are working today and approximately through December. General activities are highlighted for your convenience. Please refer to text descriptions in this section for more details on major elements being constructed in specific areas.   
 
City West Station in Eden Prairie to Shady Oak Station in Hopkins
Construction Overview: The City West Station area continues with preparation work for retaining walls. Major elements in this segment include an LRT tunnel under Highway 62, the Opus Station, many large retaining walls, the Smetana/Feltl roadway bridges over LRT and the Hopkins/Minnetonka LRT Bridge ending at the Shady Oak Road Station. 
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Construction is underway in the City West Station/LRT tunnel under Highway 62 area. Crews are working on retaining walls.  
  • Smetana Road from Feltl Road to Nolan Drive is closed. A temporary bypass is in place west of the intersection of Smetana and Feltl Roads to accommodate local traffic. See Minnetonka detour maps here.
  • Work in the Opus area continues with retaining wall work north of Bren Road West, near Smetana Road. Bridge work at Smetana/Feltl roadways is advancing with foundation and wall construction.
  • Construction for the access road for the Minnetonka – Hopkins LRT bridge will be worked on periodically.

Hopkins

This Hopkins map illustrates where construction crews are working today and approximately through December. General activities are highlighted for your convenience. Please refer to text descriptions in this section for more details on major elements being constructed in specific areas. 
 
Shady Oak Road Station to Blake Road Station
Construction Overview: There are three stations in Hopkins: Shady Oak Road, Downtown Hopkins and Blake Road. Major structures in Hopkins include an LRT bridge over Excelsior and a regional trail underpass at Blake Road. In addition to LRT track construction there is also freight rail and regional trail work in the area. There are multiple LRT and freight railroad crossings at roadways.
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Crews continue to work on Excelsior Boulevard LRT bridge piers.
  • Blake Road continues to have a single lane in each direction.

St. Louis Park

This St. Louis Park map illustrates where construction crews are working today and approximately through December. General activities are highlighted for your convenience. Please refer to text descriptions in this section for more details on major elements being constructed in specific areas. 
 
Louisiana Avenue to Beltline Boulevard
Construction Overview: Like in Hopkins, the project includes the construction of LRT track, freight rail track, and the regional trail.  There are also three stations in St. Louis Park: Louisiana Avenue, Wooddale Avenue and Beltline Boulevard. Structures in this area include LRT and freight rail bridges over Louisiana Avenue, a connection between freight lines, a pedestrian/trail underpass east of Louisiana Avenue, freight, LRT and trail bridges over Minnehaha Creek, a regional trail underpass at Wooddale Avenue, freight, LRT and trail bridges over Highway 100 and a regional trail bridge crossing over Beltline Boulevard.
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Pile driving for retaining walls near Wooddale Avenue should be expected the next few weeks.
  • Crews are working on various elements of the Beltline Boulevard Regional Trail bridge structure including piers and the stair tower. Construction crews will place the steel truss over the freight railroad tracks towards the end of January.
Expect piling in the Beltline Boulevard area until the end of January for retaining walls.

Minneapolis

There are five Minneapolis maps with each illustrating where construction crews are working today and approximately through December. General activities are highlighted for your convenience. Please refer to text descriptions in this section for more details on major elements being constructed in specific areas. 
 
Chowen Avenue to Cedar Lake Parkway  
Construction Overview:  In addition to the West Lake Street Station, crews will be reconstructing the Chowen/Abbott roadway connection. The LRT tunnel also begins in this area with work on the corresponding freight rail infrastructure and trail facilities.  
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Temporary trails near Chowen Avenue and Lake Street.
  • Kenilworth tunnel sheeting: the press-in-piler near Lake Street has finished sheeting installation and has been moved out of the corridor. The press-in-piler working to the east, near the Cedar Lake Channel, will complete the piles in this area in February, completing press-in-pile work in the Kenilworth corridor.
Kenilworth tunnel base concrete work: the initial concrete pour to create a waterproof base slab is anticipated in February. To pour the first concrete seal crews will need extended work hours until 9:00 PM as the work has to be completed in a single day.
 
Cedar Lake Parkway to Burnham Road
Construction Overview:  The LRT tunnel continues in this segment. Other elements include the construction of retaining walls (complete), and freight, LRT and trail bridges over the Cedar Lake Channel.    
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Truck traffic and noise from moving materials to and from laydown areas.
  • Cedar Lake Channel bridge piling work to resume in the spring.
Burnham Road to Bryn Mawr Station
Construction Overview:  In addition to the LRT, freight rail and trail construction, this area has two stations: West 21st Street and Bryn Mawr. The Bryn Mawr Station includes a pedestrian bridge that will extend over the freight tracks from the bluffs to the station platform.  
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Truck traffic and noise from moving materials to and from laydown areas.
  • 21st Street Station work to resume in the spring.
Bryn Mawr Station to Bassett Creek Valley Station Area
Construction Overview:  There are two stations serving residents in this area; Bryn Mawr Station and the Bassett Creek Valley Station. In addition, area construction includes LRT track, trails and the corridor protection wall. 
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Truck traffic and noise from moving materials to and from Linden Yards.
  • Concrete production in Linden Yards.
Glenwood Avenue to Target Field Station
Construction Overview:  LRT will cross a new Glenwood Avenue bridge at the roadway grade. To make that happen three bridges need to be constructed, freight rail shifted, and extensive retaining walls built. This area will see the development of the Royalston Avenue/Farmer’s Market Station, an LRT bridge crossing over North 5th Avenue and North 7th Street and LRT connecting to the Target Field Station. The Holden/Royalston/Border roadway loop will also be reconstructed with improvements.
 
Current activities to expect in this area:
  • Construction activities to advance the LRT bridge at Glenwood Avenue will continue throughout the winter and into 2021, including pile driving.
  • The continued closure of Glenwood Avenue between Lyndale Avenue North and North 12th Street. See detour map here.
  • The southbound travel lane on Royalston Avenue from North 5th Street to Holden Street is closed; the closure will be in place until summer 2021. Business access is available via the northbound lane. See the roadway impact map here.

Regional Trails


Minnesota River Bluffs Regional Trail
The Minnesota River Bluffs Regional Trail in Hopkins is closed between Shady Oak Road and 5th Avenue South. See detour map here.  
South Cedar Lake LRT Trail
The South Cedar Lake Trail from just east of the North Cedar Lake Trail connection in Hopkins to France Avenue in St. Louis Park is closed until fall 2021 . The South Cedar Lake Trail will remain open between France Avenue in St. Louis Park and Kenilworth Trail/Midtown Greenway intersection in Minneapolis. The Midtown Greenway will remain open. Currently, cross streets remain open to automobiles, bikers and pedestrians. See detour maps here.
 
Kenilworth Trail Closure
The Kenilworth Trail is closed in Minneapolis at the intersection with the Midtown Greenway to just south of West 21st Street. We are currently assessing the tunnel schedule which impacts the opening of this trail segment and we will provide an update when the schedule is known . Access for automobiles, bikers and pedestrians remains open at Cedar Lake Parkway and at West 21st Street. See detour map here.
 
North Cedar Lake Trail in Minneapolis
The North Cedar Lake Trail in Minneapolis from Linden Yards located west of Van White Boulevard to east of Royalston Avenue is now anticipated to be closed until 2022 . See detour maps here.
 
Please note, construction vehicles cross the trail as they enter and exit staging areas. Construction vehicles yield to trail users but please be aware that you may encounter construction traffic in this area.