Mayor Mary Hamann-Roland spoke extensively on the soon-to-be-opened Red Line Bus Rapid Transit Route—and its potential impact on the business community.
Apple Valley Mayor Mary Hamann-Rolad kicked off her State of the City Address on Wednesday by thanking businesses and residents for their patience during the construction of a soon-to-be-operational bus rapid transit corridor along Cedar Avenue. The bus line, which opens on June 22, will continue to expand over the next several years—with additional stations planned along the route. City officials hope it will also spur significant business growth, and have helped fund a joint market study to determine how can cities along the route—including Eagan, Apple Valley and Lakeville—best prepare for and promote development and redevelopment. Click here for a full recap of the mayor's speech.
The disagreement between Metropolitan Council and Dakota County Commissioners and suburban officials is the latest snag in the development of Bus Rapid Transit along Cedar Avenue through Apple Valley.
The Metropolitan Council's Transportation Advisory Board found money for the new bus system slated to run along Cedar Avenue in Apple Valley.
Utility work along Cedar Avenue to prepare for major roadway construction will continue through December. Lane widening and other major improvement projects are set to begin when snow melts.
Once Cedar Avenue's face-lift is finished in 2012, the highway will be a jewel—an example for the rest of the nation on how Bus Rapid Transit should look and operate, Dakota County officials say. But until then, traffic through Apple Valley and Lakeville along Cedar Avenue, the county's busiest road, will be a headache as construction crews widen the highway to accommodate new bus lanes. "Once the project is complete, the (Cedar Avenue) corridor will be one of the first Bus Rapid Transit corridors in the Midwest," said Sam O'Connell, the county's transit specialist. But construction isn't going to be done until 2012, and in the meantime, officials have acknowledged that during construction, navigating Cedar Avenue will be a challenge, with…