There is no cost to ride the Northstar Commuter rail line today or Thursday. Metro Transit is offering free rides to celebrate the opening of a new station in Ramsey.

It is free to ride from any station, however, not just from the new station adjacent to Ramsey City Hall at 7550 Sunwood Drive.

The Ramsey station is the seventh along the 41-mile line from Big Lake to Minneapolis, and the first to open since the commuter rail line began operating in 2009.

Trains heading to downtown Minneapolis will depart the Ramsey station on weekdays at 5:16, 6:06, 6:36, 7:06 and 7:36 a.m., along with one afternoon departure at 5:21 p.m. The trip to downtown is projected at 35 minutes.

Northbound trains to Elk River and Big Lake will depart at 6:43 a.m. and 4:27, 4:57, 5:27, 5:55 and 6:45 p.m.

On Saturdays southbound trains will depart at 10:38 a.m. and 1:38 and 5:28 p.m. Northbound trains will leave at noon, and 4:30 and 7:30 p.m.

On Sundays, southbound departures will be at 9:48 a.m., 2:08 and 2:58 p.m. Northbound departures will be at 11:10 a.m., 1:50 and 5:25 p.m.

The new $13 million station, trains will offer riders 12 weekday trips and six runs on weekends. Special trains also will run during Vikings and Twins games, and special events such as the Holidazzle parades.

The fare will be $3.50 each way from the Ramsey station.

Amenities include an 800-space surface lot patrolled by city and Metro Transit police, along with a skyway from the adjacent Ramsey Municipal Parking Facility.

The station, served by bus route 887, also features a covered and enclosed waiting areas with on-demand heating systems, platforms with wheelchair accessible ramps, security cameras. Conductors are on each train to assist passengers.

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