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Cedar BRT opening: Driver will be happy when delays are over

  • June 17, 2013 - 10:02 AM

Last Halloween, Angel Diehl was irked enough by the ongoing Cedar Avenue construction that she dressed up as an orange traffic cone, complete with a sign that said “Expect Major Delays.”

“It was hilarious,” Diehl said. “Everyone loved it.”

The construction, which Diehl estimates has been going on two or three years, affects her daily routine because she lives in Apple Valley. As a substitute teacher, each day she drives to a different school, most in the south metro.

Though a lot of her friends take the express bus from Apple Valley, Burnsville and Farmington to their jobs in Minneapolis or St. Paul, she says she’s unlikely to make use of the existing bus system or the new bus rapid transit to travel to the Mall of America or other locations.

“I’m five minutes from the Mall of America. I usually just jump on Cedar [in my car]. It’s two exits and I’m there,” she said.

She says she thinks of the bus rapid transit as similar to the other buses that already run on Cedar Avenue. “I’ve never even considered it to be [like a] train,” she said. “A bus is a bus.”

She’s watched the progress of the road construction from the beginning to this week, when crews put a final layer of asphalt on the road. She’s also noticed the new stations that have popped up along the line.

“I think the stations are pretty darn fancy — it looks like they spared no expense,” she said. “I think it was a little over-the-top.”

Will she be happy when the construction work is finally complete?

“Oh God, yes,” she said. “It’s been going on too long.”

Erin Adler

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