Highway Transitway Corridor Study

The Council recently studied eight highway corridors with relatively high existing peak-hour, commuter transit demand, to determine the potential for highway Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in these corridors, similar to the first two planned Highway BRT lines, the METRO Red (Cedar Avenue) and Orange (I-35W South) Lines.

Highway BRT operates all day at frequent intervals and provides enhanced passenger facilities and amenities. BRT bypasses congested traffic by using bus shoulders and MnPASS lanes. The corridors analyzed were chosen because of their potential ability to connect regional destinations with high-speed transit service that uses already existing or planned highway facilities.

Corridors studied

  • Highway 212
  • Highway 169 in the southwest metro
  • Highway 36
  • Highway 65 in the north metro
  • Interstate 94 in the northwest metro
  • Interstate 35E south of downtown St. Paul
  • Interstate 35E north of downtown St. Paul
  • Interstate 394

These 8 corridors are being compared with other independently-studied corridors to give planners a better understanding of Highway BRT potential across the entire region.  This will help guide long-range investment planning.

Study goals

  • Provide mobility benefits and respond to trip patterns/needs and deficiencies for markets identified in the purpose and need

  • Provide affordable, effective transportation improvements

  • Meet 2030 Transportation Policy Plan ridership goals

  • Seamlessly integrate with existing systems and provide valuable regional connections

  • Support area development plans, forecast growth assignment, redevelopment potential

See the report and technical memos

The final report includes a summary of each corridor and compares the corridors. Four corridors showed high potential for Highway BRT:

  • Highway 36
  • Highway 169 to Shakopee
  • I-394
  • I-94 west of Minneapolis, and 
  • Highway 55 west of Minneapolis (studied through a separate addendum, see below).

The final report also includes key findings and limitations of the study and important next steps.

See the 2014 Highway Transitway Corridor Study Final Report (36 pages, pdf) and supporting Technical Memos:

An addendum comparing the eight corridors in this study to the independently-studied corridors will be available soon.

Highway 55

Highway 55 from Minneapolis west to Medina was studied in coordination with transit providers and local governments along the corridor. This study was requested by the cities of Plymouth and Medina in response to the completion of the initial study. The following document includes a summary of that additional corridor study and supporting information:
Highway 55: Final Report Addendum with appendices (PDF, 50 pages, 4 MB)

Highway 169 North Analysis

An alternative alignment for the Highway 169 corridor from Shakopee to Brooklyn Park, terminating at the planned Blue Line Extension, was studied during a joint effort by the Metropolitan Council, Minnesota Department of Transportation, and Scott County. The analysis of this alternative emerged out of a broader Highway 169 Mobility Study that includes an evaluation of highway bus rapid transit and MnPASS alternatives in the highway corridor. This study involved participation by transit provider and local governments along the corridor and was intended to supplement the previous Highway Transitway Corridor Study efforts, using the same methodologies and basic assumptions. The following document includes a summary of that additional corridor study and supporting information:
Highway 169 North Analysis, prepared for Minnesota Department of Transportation during the Highway 169 Mobility Study (PDF, 104 pages, 3.5 MB)
Cole Hiniker
[email protected]