The project advisors looking at a Southwest transitway voted in early July to focus on light-rail transit and four routes all running through the Kenilworth Corridor, a rail/trail route between Cedar Lake and Lake of the Isles to Downtown. The group rejected further study of a Midtown Greenway-Lyndale Avenue route.
The Hennepin County Southwest Rail Corridor Transit Study Project Manager Katie Walker said the Project Advisory Committee would still study a Midtown Greenway connection between the West Lake Street interchange and Hiawatha Avenue.
They also voted to eliminate the diesel multiple unit (DMU) train, for further study, which would have run simultaneously with existing freight traffic. Diesel Multiple Units are like diesel-powered buses on rails.
According to preliminary county figures, the corridor from the Southwest suburbs to Downtown would cost from $431 million to $926 million in 2010 dollars, with operating costs of $15.7 million to $25.7 million, depending on various transitway scenarios.
The PAC recommendationswill be presented to the Hennepin County Rail Regional Authority July 22, after the Journal's deadlines. Further design will follow.
For more information regarding the study, check out www.co.hennepin.mn.us/tcw/southwest/swhome.htm