NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
Saturday November 17th 2018

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Transit – The need for speed

By JOHN CHARLES WILSON
There are two pieces of good transit news in the Twin Cities this month: one directly impacts the Phillips Community, and the other mostly benefits those who commute to the southern suburbs.

In the July issue of The Alley, I mentioned that Route 2 (Franklin Avenue) was going to be made faster due to a decrease in the number of stops. That plan went into effect on the 13th of October. I am sure that some people won’t like this because they may have to do some extra walking, but for those who are able and willing to do it, the time savings will probably be worth it.

Construction on I-35W has reached a phase where some of the routes which had been on detour can be restored to the freeway, via a special bus-only ramp, going southbound in the PM rush hour. This first benefit of the construction is coming to us soon – the 22nd of October, to be exact. Other parts of the new Orange Line (the future replacement for Route 535) will be coming soon. Preliminary work has already begun on the Lake Street Station, a middle-of-the-freeway bus station similar to the one at 46th Street and a replacement for the old I-35W and Lake Street stops at the top of the crumbling staircases that were built in 1967 – the ones that Elizabeth Glidden once famously said “just don’t cut it”. 2019 and 2020 will bring us the Knox Avenue Transitway under I-494 between Best Buy headquarters and Southtown, and the final suburban Orange Line Stations. In 2021, the Orange Line should be fully functional and ready to go.

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