Twin Cities Commuter Rail (fantasy transit)
This page details the Twin Cities commuter rail portion of my fantasy transit system: a series of commuter rail lines utilizing existing rail tracks. Currently, the Northstar line has begun construction, with opening currently scheduled for 2009. Another commuter line in the early planning stages is the Red Rock corridor.
|Line Name||Location||Description||Stations||Map Links|
|Northstar||Minneapolis to St. Cloud||This line follows the real-life proposal for the Northstar line with a couple exceptions. First, there would be no stations between downtown Minneapolis and Anoka, in order to facilitate its express function, while local service is provided by the Northtown LRT line. Second, the line would extend to St. Cloud, with potential future extension to Little Falls.||Minneapolis Multimodal, Anoka, Ramsey, Elk River, Big Lake, Becker, Clear Lake, St. Cloud Northstar|
|Bethel||Minneapolis to Cambridge||This line would also begin at the downtown Multimodal station, following the BNSF tracks north as with the Northstar line, but would take the tracks northward towards Cambridge.||Minneapolis Multimodal, Coon Rapids, Andover, Oak Grove, Bethel, Isanti, Cambridge|
|Hudson||St. Paul to Hudson, WI||
This line would follow the Union Pacific tracks from St. Paul Union Station east to Hudson.
|St. Paul Union Station, Century Ave, Lake Elmo, Hudson|
|Red Rock||Minneapolis to Hastings||This line follows the real-life proposal for the Red Rock line, with one exception. The stations between downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul Union Station would be eliminated in order to facilitate its express function, while local service is provided by the Central LRT line. The line could potentially extend beyond Hastings to Red Wing.||Minneapolis Multimodal, St. Paul Union Station, Afton Rd, Newport, Cottage Grove, Hastings|
|Norwood||Minneapolis to Norwood Young America||This line begins at the Minneapolis Multimodal station and runs southwest along the Twin Cities and Western rail tracks towards Norwood Young America. The line could potentially extend to Glencoe.||Minneapolis Multimodal, Hopkins, Chanhassan, Chaska, Cologne, Norwood Young America|
|Mound||Minneapolis to St. Bonifacius||This line also begins at the Minneapolis Multimodal station, following the BNSF line west to Wayzata, then the soon-to-be-abandoned Dakota Rail tracks west towards Mound. The line could potentially extend to Hutchinson.||Minneapolis Multimodal, Wayzata, Navarre, Mound, St. Bonifacius|
|Buffalo||Minneapolis to Buffalo||This line begins from the Minneapolis Multimodal station by following the same BNSF mainline that the Northstar and Bethel lines follow. Just north of St. Anthony Pkwy, the line follows a connector (that doesn't exist in real life) to the Canadian Pacific mainline that heads west along Hwy 55. The line follows this CP trackage to Buffalo.||Minneapolis Multimodal, Plymouth, Hamel, Loretto, Rockford, Buffalo|
Rough Cost Estimates
The below chart shows a rough cost estimate for each line, based on a planning-level cost of $10 million per mile:
|Northstar||25.3 (Big Lake to St. Cloud)||$253 million (excludes cost of existing line construction)|
|Red Rock||31.1||$311 million|
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Page last modified 24 October, 2009