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Peter McLaughlin, Counties Transit Improvement Board Chair, 612-348-7884

Mary Richardson, Counties Transit Improvement Board Administrator, 651-222-7227


CTIB accelerates regional transit projects with $77 million in grant funding

The Counties Transit Improvement Board is accelerating regional transit projects, approving a total of $77 million in capital and operating grants that will impact eight transit corridors throughout the region. 

Grant categories

  • METRO system and transitways – METRO Blue Line Extension (Bottineau LRT), METRO Orange Line (I-35W South BRT), and the Gateway Corridor (Gold Line BRT) project.
  • Transitway improvement projects – Mall of America Station improvements, Northstar Commuter Rail safety improvements at Hanson Boulevard.
  • Washington County guaranteed funding – Gateway Corridor (Gold Line BRT) Pre-Project Development support activities, Red Rock Corridor station area planning and ridership modeling.
  • Operating grants – METRO Blue Line, METRO Green Line, Northstar Commuter Rail, METRO Red Line, Cedar Avenue BRT Express, I-35W South BRT Express.

With three projects simultaneously in-progress with the Federal Transit Administration, the Minneapolis-Saint Paul metropolitan area is advancing toward a system-wide network. Collectively, expanding the METRO system has the potential to bring in $1.6 billion in federal funding into the region.

“The region-wide impact of our funding commitments can’t be ignored,” said Counties Transit Improvement Board Chair and Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin. “There are 11 Fortune 500 companies whose headquarters are located on an existing or planned regional transitway. Major tourism destinations, such as the Mall of America or Minneapolis Convention Center, are located on transit lines, and all of our sports venues, the University of Minnesota, and the State Capitol will have transit access. Clearly, transit is a priority, helping keep our economy vibrant and competitive with the rest of the country.”

Moving forward

The following grants are being approved:

  • $17.8 million, METRO Blue Line Extension (Bottineau LRT) – Project development and environmental review activities.
  • $10.7 million, METRO Orange Line (I-35W South BRT) – Project development and environmental review activities.
  • $10.2 million, Northstar Commuter Rail – Construction of safety improvements to separate commuter rail and freight rail traffic from automobile traffic on Hanson Boulevard in Coon Rapids.
  • $5.4 million, Gateway Corridor Gold Line BRT – Project development and environmental review activities, after the project is accepted into Project Development by the FTA.
  • $2.3 million, Mall of America Station – Construct improvements to Mall of America Station, which will improve METRO Red Line travel times and safety near the METRO Blue Line light rail tracks.
  • $1.48 million, Washington County guaranteed grants – Support transit-oriented development planning and other project activities for the Gateway Corridor Gold Line BRT project, prior to its acceptance into Project Development by the FTA. Funds will also be used to support station area planning and ridership modeling for the Red Rock Corridor.
  • $32.2 million, Metropolitan Council – Operating grants for six transitways.

The Counties Transit Improvement Board has awarded $721 million in grants since it formed in 2008. 

About the Counties Transit Improvement Board

The Counties Transit Improvement Board was created in 2008 by a joint powers agreement among the counties of Anoka, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey and Washington. Through a regional transit-dedicated quarter-cent sales tax and $20 motor vehicle excise tax, the board awards grants to support the development, construction and operation of regional light rail, commuter rail and bus rapid transit lines. Learn more about the Counties Transit Improvement Board online at www.mnrides.org.  


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