Orange Line (35W BRT) & Lake St Transit Access Project

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UptownSport
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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby UptownSport » April 12th, 2013, 8:11 pm

RailBaronYarr wrote: I never actually suggested taking away capacity (ie reducing lanes).
Not, ever?
RailBaronYarr wrote:^^ and reducing the number and width of lanes on the ones that remain.

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby Tcmetro » April 18th, 2013, 1:07 pm

An update on the Orange Line:

http://www.metrocouncil.org/Council-Mee ... ation.aspx

Looks like the new date for the Lake St and American Bl stations is 2018. I assume upgrades mentioned (11th/12th, 66th, 98th, Burnsville Station) would also be complete by then.

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Mdcastle
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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby Mdcastle » April 19th, 2013, 8:42 am

I believe Mn/DOT has shut up about moving the ramps to 38th because of neighborhood opposition. FWIW the original early 1990s plan (which included light rail and would have taken out a row of houses west of the freeway) kept the ramps at 35/36th but braided them to eliminate that nasty weave. Even back then it was estimated at a billion dollars and was sunk in favor of smaller, more modest incremental improvements due to the extreme cost before it got beyond the drawling lines on paper phase.

They're actually building a new nasty weave on MN 36 at US 61 / English street because the locals wouldn't let them build a plan that didn't include it.

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby mamundsen » April 19th, 2013, 8:56 am

Mdcastle wrote:They're actually building a new nasty weave on MN 36 at US 61 / English street because the locals wouldn't let them build a plan that didn't include it.
What does this mean? According to MN Dot they are taking out the signal and putting in a diamond interchange. http://www.dot.state.mn.us/metro/projec ... maplewood/

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby Suburban Outcast » April 20th, 2013, 5:18 am

I think Mdcastle is talking about the auxiliary lane planned between 61 and English Street. It might cause problems given some MN drivers don't know to merge properly, but it's not as bad as a weave compared to 36's cloverleaf interchanges.

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby Mdcastle » April 20th, 2013, 6:41 pm

The merge area between the east US 61 ramps and the west English street ramps will be well below standards, and the weave at the cloverleafs will remain, Mn/DOT had a design that didn't create problem 1 and fixed problem 2, it would have taken out two of the cloverleafs and combined the two interchanges, but the local residents decided to play highway engineer and pressured the city to not let Mn/DOT build it that way.

Contrast this with the project up in Osseo. The huge loops being built took out a century farm, but not doing so would have created another weave, and this time the city let Mn/DOT design it how they wanted, despite resident's opposition.

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby LRV Op Dude » April 26th, 2013, 2:59 am

METRO Orange Line Bus Rapid Transit Update to the Metropolitan Council Transportation Committee
Blog: Old-Twin Cities Transit New-Twin Cities Transit

You Tube: Old, New

AKA: Bus Driver Dude

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby twincitizen » April 26th, 2013, 10:09 am

I previously posted this in the 494 thread, but it's even more relevant here:

A bill has been introduced recently to fund the 494/35W turbine interchange and American Boulevard BRT Station.

Why isn't anyone advocating for pedestrian bridges in this area? Penn and Lyndale are a mile apart and it's not like you can walk along 35W to get to American Boulevard Station. On top of that, Penn & Lyndale bridges are both SPUIs and are incredibly hostile to pedestrians.

Funding for a Knox Avenue pedestrian bridge should absolutely be included the American boulevard station money. Actually no, it should have been included in the 2012-3 construction project on 494.

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Re: Interstate 494

Postby mattaudio » May 1st, 2013, 11:32 am

Is the reason for the stop being at American due to future American BRT? Seems like 77th St-ish on the north side of 494 would be better for connecting to employers, since there could be a climate-controlled walkway between Best Buy, the BRT station, and Meridian Crossings.

With the exception of that 80s tower at 82nd St., there's not a lot of walkable destinations on the south side of 494.

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Re: Interstate 494

Postby mister.shoes » May 1st, 2013, 11:54 am

Not at the moment, but Bloomington is trying to redo the entire Penn-American area around transit.
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Re: Interstate 494

Postby woofner » May 1st, 2013, 12:25 pm

If the Orange Line had been planned in a coherent manner as a transit facility, the plans would call for a station both at American Blvd and at 77th St. Instead the plans were quickly thrown together by MnDot in a response to Minneapolis' veto of the Crosstown Commons. Unfortunately none of the relevant players have any interest in making the Orange Line into a functional transit facility - in fact, Minneapolis is the only agency in the region with any consistent interest in a functional transit system, if you ask me. We can only hope that the Met Council's new regional plan has a more-than-symbolic call for transit as a substantial component of the regional transportation system, and that they then take over Orange Line planning from MnDot, who have had 8 decades to prove that they don't give half a shit about transit.
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Re: Interstate 494

Postby Tcmetro » May 1st, 2013, 1:36 pm

Additionally, the 76th St bridge was pushed through before the turbine design came about, so it is built to accommodate the previous stack interchange idea. Perhaps there is enough room for a BRT station to be rigged into place, kinda like the American Bl station plan.

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woofner
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Re: Interstate 494

Postby woofner » May 1st, 2013, 2:02 pm

They certainly built the 76th st bridge with enough room (40-50' on either side of the roadway), although it looks like that was done just to accommodate the on-off ramps for the expanded 494 interchange. Probably the final design could be more compact so the on-off ramps aren't taking up the entirety of the expansion space, but it's hard to imagine them getting the 60' or so that a center-platform online station would require.

Regardless, MnDot will need someone to push them to plan for a 76th St station, and I don't see Bloomington or Richfield bothering.
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Re: Interstate 494

Postby twincitizen » May 1st, 2013, 2:48 pm

redisciple, how hard is Minneapolis pushing for a station at 38th Street? I bet they'd allow that bridge to be rebuilt (with exit relocated from 35/36th) without a transit station. I'd put money on it. Perhaps we need to get in Glidden's ear now.

I completely agree that stations at 76th and American are feasible, not only because they exceed 1/2-mile stopping distance (which is totally normal for LRT) but because the station areas are completely unwalkable. I'd take a 76th St Station over my Knox Ave ped bridge, but I offer that as a much cheaper solution.

Eek...the last 4 posts (including this one) should be moved to the Orange Line thread.

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woofner
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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby woofner » May 1st, 2013, 4:02 pm

I doubt that any pushing is currently involved, but I believe the city would work to get a 38th St station built when that bridge is replaced. I emailed with CM Glidden about 4 years ago, and she mentioned that she and the city were supportive of a station there. I think it's in Access Minneapolis too but not sure.

You remind me of my worries of the Met Council's Regional Transitway Guidelines (why do these exist, by the way, instead of a document that is planning something tangible?). This document lists an "Average 2 mile" stop spacing for Highway BRT. It seems to me that the average interchange spacing for freeways inside the beltway is more like 1 mile, so why would there be a BRT stop only every two exits? 1 mile would also be more in line with global rapid transit station spacing, if we're still pretending that highway BRT is rapid transit.
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fehler
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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby fehler » May 2nd, 2013, 9:32 am

Since the 38th Street bridge/ramp project was originally tied to the "Lake Street Access" project, I'm guessing there's no momentum behind it because no one wants to pick the scab on that wound again.

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woofner
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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby woofner » May 2nd, 2013, 10:37 am

All of the infrastructure on 35W between 42nd St and I-94 are of the same generation (about 5 years older than the collapsed 35W bridge). They are at the end of their lifespan and need to be replaced if they're expected to continue carrying the same amount of vehicular traffic (alternately they could be declared bike/ped only). The 35-36-38 project is certainly in the back of someone's head, but probably won't be funded for a few years after Lake St, I'd guess 2020-25 range.

Another thing I've been thinking about the Orange Line - if we really expect this to have the appeal and functionality of a rapid transit line, shouldn't it be realigned to Nicollet in Downtown Minneapolis? Undoubtedly Marquette & 2nd are faster, and likely always will be since no one is going to be willing to spend money on the tens of thousands of transit riders who use Nicollet Mall daily. But Marquette & 2nd are a very confusing place to catch a bus that you don't catch every day. I've caught buses there dozens of times now, and I still am unsure about which letter I'm going to every time, and to be sure I have to look at a long smudgy list of bus numbers, and the bus I'm looking for doesn't always appear on the RTD until right before it shows up. Not to mention the one-way pair confusion (anyone remember offhand which street carries which direction of bus traffic?). Seems like if we want the Orange Line to be used like the Green or Blue lines, it should be moved to a more easily legible transit facility.
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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby Mdcastle » May 2nd, 2013, 2:31 pm

I think the right way to do it would have been to move the 82nd ramps to southbound only ramps at American, then build vehicle bridges over I-494 at Knox and somewhere east of the freeway so traffic heading north can get to 77th, and traffic going south can get to American without clogging Penn an Lyndale. If you only had one BRT station this would make it easy for pedestrians to get from the station to Best Buy (campus and store) from American, or to the Penn-American district if the station was at 77th.

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby mattaudio » August 13th, 2013, 9:11 am

Anyone with access want to summarize?
http://finance-commerce.com/2013/08/ora ... velopment/

Isn't the point of high-quality transit that it should serve nodes that are dense and where "space ... is tight" ???

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Re: Orange Line (35W BRT)

Postby Tcmetro » August 16th, 2013, 10:16 am

Some significant updates have been posted on the Metro Transit website about the Orange Line:

- Service now projected to begin in 2019.
- Knox Ave bridge is being considered for stations at 76th St and American Bl. This would also help keep the grid structure of the bus system in the area.
- 66th St Station improvements in conjunction with Hennepin County reconstruction project.
- Stop moved for SB 98th St to the frontage road instead of the on-ramp.
- Phase 2 extension to Burnsville Center and 167th/Kenrick Station.

http://www.metrotransit.org/Data/Sites/ ... ission.pdf
http://www.metrotransit.org/Data/Sites/ ... ington.pdf
http://www.metrotransit.org/Data/Sites/ ... -final.pdf
http://www.metrotransit.org/Data/Sites/ ... ouncil.pdf


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