Southwest LRT Price Tag Jumps to $2 Billion

The following article by Peter Callaghan was published in the April 27, 2015 issue of MinnPost:

Southwest LRT Price Tag Jumps to $2 Billion

Gov. Mark Dayton: “The continuing escalation of the costs to design and build this line raise serious questions about its viability and affordability.”

Southwest LRT price tag jumps to $2 billion
MinnPost photo by Bill Kelley

What was once a $1.66 billion price tag to extend light rail from Target Field Station to Eden Prairie is now a nearly $2 billion price tag.

The increase in the estimate to complete the 16-mile extension is being blamed on more-detailed engineering, which found poor ground conditions along the route and soil contamination in St. Louis Park and Hopkins. The price increase, coming even before next month’s expected release of a draft environmental impact statement that could result in other cost hikes, threatens the project.

Gov. Mark Dayton said he was “shocked and appalled” at the new estimated costs.

To continue reading, click on the link to the complete MinnPost article.