Community members to weigh in on potential Blue Line extension routes in north Minneapolis

Plans for one seat service from the northwest suburbs all the way to Mall of America are taking shape. But before you can catch a train, project developers need to determine the exact path the METRO Blue Line extension will take. 

The extension line from the Target Field station to Brooklyn Park was initially mapped to run along an existing rail line, but those plans changed when the railroad wouldn't sell it. 

The Metropolitan Council's Blue Line Project Lead Sam O'Connell says the route is now expected to run through north Minneapolis on the corridors of Lowry Avenue North or West Broadway. 

Executive Director of the West Broadway Business and Area Coalition Felicia Perry believes community engagement and input is crucial before construction begins. 

"A lot of community is concerned about safety...they are concerned about displacement and gentrification in the neighborhood," Perry said. 

Along with other local community groups and the Met Council, Perry will help host a tour and listening session on Saturday. 

"We are really interested in seeing how a community like north Minneapolis can experience a transportation project in a different way," Perry said. 

People will be able to experience both potential routes firsthand, and then can share their opinions. 

"We are going to take a walk and roll along West Broadway and Lowry and be able to understand, now if we put it here, what are the impacts?" O'Connell said. 

Stakeholders hope this engagement will help create a plan that keeps the project moving forward and allows north Minneapolis residents and business owners to enjoy the infrastructure and investment. 

Project organizers hope to have a draft proposal of the final route complete by the end of this year. If all goes according to schedule, the extension will open in 2028. 

To learn more about Saturday's event and to register, click here.