MnLRT...Moving Minnesoootans Into the Next Century

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 2000 | 1999  | 1998 | 1997 1996
Fall 1996 - Spring 1997: The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) Files $2.05 Billion Spending Plan for 1997-1999
MnDOT and local governments propose to spend $2.05 Billion on state highway, local street, bridge and transportation enhancement projects over the next three years, according to MnDOT's latest press release. "MnDOT is very proud of the job it has done managing available resources to address the state's transportation needs," according to MnDOT Commissioner James Denn. According to the press release, "Nearly 1200 highway and local street projects account for $1.580 Billion in expenditures."
10 DEC 1996: Metropolitan Council Response to Public Feedback on Regional Blueprint
In a December 10, 1996 summary, the Met Council responded to public comments on its draft Regional Blueprint. Despite overwhelming public support for LRT, the Council responded, "The Council believes in an incremental approach to transitway implementation, beginning with busways, is the most reasonable, responsible way to enhance and re-invigorate the regional transit system at this time. Evolution of busways into rail (LRT) corridors is entirely possible, but the Council, cannot at this point, make a full-fledged commitment to rail given the realities of operational and capital funding constraints on transit. No changes (to the Blueprint) recommended."

MnLRT Replies
The Twin Cities has planned transit in "incremental approaches" for decades. The result is a large, inefficient system with the highest fares in the United States and incrementally decreasing ridership. The Twin Cities' transit system is missing the simple high-speed and high quality connections that LRT provides.

The Met Council philosophy that building lanes first, followed by LRT later, only results in a doubling of the cost, increased construction delays for transit riders and passenger vehicles, and lost opportunity to attract new riders to the system.

When marketing a transit system to the public, the reality is that it is not LRT vs. the Bus - it is transit vs. the domination of the car. Buses and LRT have proven to work - in fact they must work together for a public transit system to operate as efficiently as possible.

2000 | 1999  | 1998 | 1997 1996
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