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It was a record-breaking year for MVTA State Fair ridership

Just like Metro Transit, it was a banner year for the Minnesota Valley Transit Authority in terms of State Fair ridership.

The agency saw 14 percent more riders than it did in 2015, with 77,729 rides provided to and from park and ride lots in Eagan and Burnsville all 12 days of the fair. It also served the Marschall Road Transit in Shakopee on weekends.

While the State Fair saw three record attendance days and set an all-time attendance record, MVTA set a few records of its own. First, the transit agency had its largest single-day ridership with 13,323 rides on Sept. 3. Second, ridership from Shakopee on the fair's two weekends and Labor Day totaled 8,803, an increase of 32 percent over 2015. Third, total ridership from the Eagan Transit Station totaled 24,003, up 23 percent from 2015. It was only the second year service to and from Eagan had been offered every day of the fair.

Here are some other numbers:

•    Weekday ridership from the Burnsville Transit Station was 23,134.
•    Weekday ridership from the Eagan Transit Station was 9,557.
•    Weekend (two Saturdays, two Sundays and Labor Day) ridership from the Burnsville Transit Station was 21,789.
•    Weekend ridership from the Eagan Transit Station was 14,446.

"We were very excited by ridership growth from the Marschall Road Transit Station in Shakopee,” said Jon Ulrich, MVTA Chair and Scott County Commissioner. 

MVTA provides service in Apple Valley, Burnsville, Eagan, Prior Lake, Rosemount, Savage and Shakopee.

During the fair’s 12-day run, Metro Transit provided just over 632,500 rides to and from the fairgrounds, surpassing last year’s record ridership by nearly 10 percent. The highest single-day State Fair ridership was Sept. 3, when Metro Transit provided 73,667 rides, the agency said.

Brace for congestion as Ryder Cup will bring heavy traffic to Chaska, Shakopee

The much-anticipated Ryder Cup gets underway this week and with it comes a heads up for motorists: Expect lots and lots of extra traffic in Chaska and Shakopee.

Officials are an expecting extra 10,000 to 14,000 vehicles per day on routes leading to designated parking locations for the tournament as the best U.S. and international golfers tee off at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska. Practice rounds begin Tuesday and match play starts on Friday.

Traffic is anticipated to be heaviest during morning rush hour on both directions of Hwy. 169, County Road 101 and around Canterbury Park where a vast majority of spectators will be directed to park. Shuttle buses will take fans from there to the golf course, adding to the number of vehicles on the road.

To ease congestion, Chaska Police Chief Scott Knight is urging people to carpool whenever possible.

A number of roads immediately adjacent to the golf course on Hazeltine Boulevard will be closed.

"Do not think that you can take a taxi to Hazeltine, park in a nearby business or neighborhood, or be dropped off at the curb,” Knight said.

Shuttle buses will run from Canterbury Park from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 6 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 7 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Sunday. Plan on 30 minutes from the time you park your car to the time you arrive at the gate.

SouthWest Transit will provide service from four locations for spectators and volunteers who are being dropped-off, walking, or biking: SouthWest Village, Chanhassen High School, East Creek Station and Carver Station. Round trip rides are $5, but don't expect to park the stations. Only those with proper credentials/hang tags issued though SouthWest Transit and the PGA of America will be able to park on site.

Metro Transit will provide service between downtown Minneapolis and Hazeltine each day of the event