SWLRT Construction Tour Update

August 13, 2021

Article submitted by Beth Engum, CBS Squared, Inc. (chapter sponsor), and APWA-MN Chapter President

On Thursday, August 5th, 11 individuals set out to explore construction on the METRO Green Line Extension, more commonly known as the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) project. The 14.5-mile Southwest corridor includes 16 new stations and extends from downtown Minneapolis to Eden Prairie. Construction of the $2 billion endeavor began in 2019 and is expected to be ready for passenger service in 2023.

The technical tour, organized by the Membership and Special Events Committee, was sponsored by Metro Transit, who provided two vans with drivers and two tour guides. We left from St. Louis Park and visited three sites, the first of which was the western end of the line in Eden Prairie. Southwest Station is located just north of the Purgatory Creek wetland area and south of Highway 212. Anyone who has done work in this area knows the soils can be challenging. Construction here includes reconfiguration of the existing bus terminal and expansion of the existing park and ride facility.

The second stop was in Hopkins at the site of one of the 29 bridges on the project. Here the LRT will go over the existing freight rail line. The last stop was the Royalston Avenue/Farmers Market Station on the edge of Downtown Minneapolis, the site of a couple more of the project's many bridges.





It was a great not-too-hot, sunny day for the tour. Thank you, Metro Transit!



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