Residents testy about new Blue Line extension, say it splits neighborhood

Written by Bill Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
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Some residents want officials to change the route of Blue Line extension.
RailWorks

People come together when there is talk about dividing a neighborhood.

That is not good news for Metropolitan Council when it comes to the Blue Line extension.

Residents of Lyn Park in north Minneapolis voiced their concerns about the proposed alignment during a three-hour meeting on May 17.

After failing to negotiate with BNSF for the use of the Class 1’s tracks, Met Council announced a few weeks ago a new route for the Blue Line extension, one that would use West Broadway in north Minneapolis. Trains would run along Lyndale Avenue from Target Field, with stops at Plymouth Avenue station, the Minnesota Workforce Center and the Hennepin County Human Services Center.

The realignment would divide Lyn Park, which is predominately Black, in two.

Residents want the extension to run along Washington Avenue from Target Field before turning into West Broadway, which would take Lyndale out of the equation. Trains moving along Lyndale also would put them in close proximity to residential dwellings in Lyn Park.

Hennepin County officials said the Lyndale option was the only alternative that did not require the purchase of single-family homes. The Washington Avenue route is not near as many regional destinations, and is mostly commercial and industrial.

Officials said it is not too late to change the route, which has been approved by Met Council and Hennepin County.

Construction is slated to begin in 2025.

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