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Unlike the southern tunnel, the northern tunnel would run a half mile through a wider parklike stretch of the corridor, where there is more room to locate light-rail above ground next to freight and trails. The northern tunnel would end north of 21st Street, sacrificing plans for a station that is projected to serve an average of 1,652 riders a weekday.
Some regional officials have suggested cutting the northern leg to spare the station and shave $60 million off the $160 million tunnel cost. Officials also explored running the light rail through the entire corridor at ground level next to the freight and trails, or elevating the trails above them. Either of those options would cost about $55 million. All of those ideas draw even stronger opposition in Minneapolis and have been cast aside, as least for now.
Pat Doyle • 612-673-4504