May public open houses set for maintenance facility sites

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Date: 4/26/2013

Three public open houses will be held in mid-May to get feedback on a short list of potential locations for the Southwest LRT Project’s operations and maintenance facility. 

The maintenance facility will house 180 permanent operator and maintenance jobs and is where light rail vehicles will be cleaned, stored and undergo light maintenance. 

The same information about all of the potential candidates for the maintenance facility location will be presented at each of the three following meetings: 

May 13 – 5 to 7:00 p.m. – Eden Prairie City Center, Heritage Rooms, 8080 Mitchell Rd., Eden Prairie.  This open house is being held concurrently with Hennepin County’s Transitional Station Area Action Plan meeting at the same location. For details about the county meeting, see Hennepin County's Southwest Transitway website

May 15 – 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. – Southwest Project Office, Park Place West, 6465 Wayzata Blvd, Ste. 500, St. Louis Park.  

May 22 – 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. – Hopkins Center for the Arts, Jaycees Studio Room, 1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins.

Any individual who requires assistance to participate should contact Dan Pfeiffer, Southwest LRT Community Outreach Coordinator, at daniel.pfeiffer@metrotransit.org or 612-373-3897. Requests for special assistance should be made seven business days in advance of the scheduled meeting. 

An event flyer [PDF] with information on locations and times is available. 

In late February, the project office presented a list of 18 potential sites for the maintenance facility in response to comments received on the four sites considered in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement. After receiving feedback about the 18 sites from the project’s committees of residents and business representatives, Hennepin County officials and officials of the cities on the Southwest LRT route, staff is narrowing that list to those sites that will be presented at the mid-May open houses. 

“The open houses are opportunities for project office staff to learn more of the local perspective from potentially impacted businesses and residents and address their concerns during preliminary engineering and design and ultimately develop a better solution,” said Sam O’Connell, manager of public involvement for the Southwest LRT Project. 

Public comments shared at open houses will be summarized and shared with members of the project’s Business Advisory Committee, Community Advisory Committee and Corridor Management Committee to help them understand local issues around each site as they provide their thoughts. 

With the benefit of input from citizens, businesses and the various committees, the Metropolitan Council will choose the preferred site later this year. 

Operational evaluation criteria for the maintenance facility are: 

  • Effective site configuration 
  • Close proximity to the mainline 
  • Good connection to the mainline 
  • Access for the operations staff 

Site characteristic evaluation criteria are: 

  • Adjacent land-use compatibility 
  • Transit Oriented Development/mixed use/economic development considerations 
  • Zoning 
  • Site and facilities cost: facilities, grading, utilities, soils 
  • Real estate acquisition: cost, complexity, legalities 
  • Relocation cost: displaced occupants and uses 
  • Environmental impact: wetlands, hazardous materials 
  • Cultural resources: cultural, historical 
  • Stormwater management: drainage, treatment 

About the Southwest LRT Project (Green Line Extension)

The Southwest Light Rail Transit (LRT) Project will operate from downtown Minneapolis through the southwestern suburban cities of St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka, and Eden Prairie, passing in close proximity to the City of Edina.  The proposed alignment is primarily at-grade and includes 17 new stations and approximately 15.8-miles of double track.   The line will connect major activity centers in the region including downtown Minneapolis, the Opus/Golden Triangle employment area in Minnetonka and Eden Prairie, Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park, the Eden Prairie Center Mall, and the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes. Ridership in 2030 is projected at 29,660 weekday passengers.  The project will interline with Central Corridor LRT which will provide a one-seat ride to destinations such as the University of Minnesota, state Capitol and downtown St. Paul.  It will be part of an integrated system of transitways, including connections to the Hiawatha LRT line, the Northstar Commuter Rail line, a variety of major bus routes along the alignment, and proposed future transitway and rail lines.  The Metropolitan Council will be the grantee of federal funds. The regional government agency is charged with building the line in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Transportation. The Southwest Corridor Management Committee, which includes commissioners from Hennepin County and the mayors of Minneapolis, St. Louis Park, Edina, Hopkins, Minnetonka, and Eden Prairie provides advice and oversight. Funding is provided by the Federal Transit Administration, Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB), state of Minnesota and Hennepin County Regional Railroad Authority (HCRRA).

Media Contact

Laura Baenen  
Communications Manager  
Southwest LRT Project  
Metropolitan Council  
651-602-1797 office  
612-269-4365 cell  
Laura.Baenen@metrotransit.org

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Tags: SWLRT

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