Minneapolis Street Car

Minneapolis Streetcar Projects UPDATE:

Nicollet-Central Urban Cir- culator Alternatives Analysis:
In December 2010, the City of Minneapolis was awarded a grant from the Federal Transit Administration to evaluate alternative transit improve-ments – either streetcar or enhanced bus – on Nicollet and Central avenues between the Columbia Heights Transit Center and the 46th Street Bus Rapid Transit station. The City is currently preparing to initiate that work.

In March 2010, the City Council approved the long-term streetcar network identified in the Minneapolis Streetcar Feasibility Study Final Report. This report recommends a long-term streetcar network made of seven of the most heavily used Primary Transit Network corridors that could be implemented in 20-50 years, depending on funding availability. It was developed with the assistance of the 30+ member Access Minneapolis Project Steering Committee and presented in nine public meetings held in October 2007. The final report was completed and presented to City Council in January 2008.

In March 2010, a second study, the Minneapolis Streetcar Funding Study Final Report was also presented to City Council. This report examines a set of financial tools that could enable funding of a possible “starter line” in the long-term streetcar network, including both local funding options and federal funding options.

The above link provides an overview of:

-Federal streetcar funding

--Streetcar systems in general,

--Proposed future Nicollet-Central Urban Circulator Alternatives Analysis project:

--Completed Plans

--Streetcar Feasibility Study Final Report – Dec. 2007 (PDF, 7 MB)

-- Streetcar Feasibility Study Executive Summary – Dec. 2007 (PDF, 600 K)

--Long-Term Streetcar Network Map – Dec. 2007 (PDF, 400 K)

(Additional supporting documentation from the Feasibility Study is available under Project Documents.)

--Streetcar Funding Study Final Report – March 2010 (PDF, 4 MB)

--Streetcar Funding Study Executive Summary – March 2010 (PDF, 800 K)

--Streetcar Funding Study Presentation to T&PW Committee – March 23, 2010 (PDF, 3 MB)


Minneapolis Snags $900,000 for Nicollet Avenue Street- car Study

It was one of 24 grants awarded nationwide by the Federal Transit Administration to study alternative transit plans.
By Jon Collins, December 23, 2010

The studied route starts at the new 46th Street transit station on Nicollet, heads north through downtown, then through North Minneapolis on Central Avenue all the way to the Columbia Heights transit station.

The $1.2 million study will assess cost, ridership and traffic flow to help city leaders decide whether the streetcar line is a good idea. It will also include studies of an enhanced bus line and a "non-build" scenario. The study, which includes public hearings, will take about 18 months from the time the city receives the funds.? ?

This particular corridor was chosen because it crosses neighborhoods with very high population density, as well as downtown, said Anna Flintoft, transportation planner for the Minneapolis Department of Public Works.

"A lot of streetcars tend to be heavily about economic development," Flintoft said. "This is very much about improving the transit system for people who live and work in the city."

No one is proposing that the city abandon its current transit blend of buses and light rail. Instead, the plan envisions streetcars feeding into other transit developments like the new 46th Street transit station, where many Southwest Minneapolis buses check in.

This study will be the first baby step towards implementing the long-term streetcar plan that passed the Minneapolis City Council in March. Although the federal grant covers the bulk of the study's cost, the city council set aside the other $300,000 a couple years back to pay for a streetcar study.?

At one time, Minneapolis had a thriving streetcar system that stretched to every corner of the city. ?The city closed down the last public streetcar line in 1954.

The current crop of streetcars, used in cities such as Portland, OR, look much like small light rail vehicles. The federal government has given out $408 million for streetcar projects around the country in the last 14 months.??

"It's the start of something that we hopefully will be implementing citywide," city council member John Quincy said of the study. "Regardless of our current budget conditions, we have to keep thinking many years out into the future and not just be looking at the next step."


Streetcar – 2020-2050
Seven proposed lines:

1. Northwest to Robbinsdale
2. Southwest along Hennipin Avenue to Lake of the Isles
3. East-west along Lake Street from Hiawatha Avenue to St. Louis Park
4. South along Nicolette Avenue to 46th Street
5. South along Chicago Avenue to 38th Street
6. East across Mississippi River and along 2nd Street and University Avenue
7. North along Central Avenue to Columbia Heights and Hilltop

Long-term project without set construction or completion dates; no currently set-aside revenue

click photos to enlarge
Anna Flintoft
Transportation Planner
Public Works Department
City of Lakes Building, Room 301
309 2nd Ave South
Minneapolis, MN 55401
(612) 673-3885




Mission Statement Surveys & Opinions Contact Us