Robbinsdale Council Sends Concerns, Comments with Light Rail Report
In this week’s Robbinsdale Council meeting, council members approved a draft modification report that included several comments, concerns and suggestions about the proposed route that would run light rail down Highway 81.
“We’re asking them to amend their plan and we’ve made some corrections,” said Mayor Bill Blonigan in Tuesday night’s meeting where the council discussed concerns at length. You can review the draft modification report here.
The main concern with the proposed route in Robbinsdale is that it would run down the center of Highway 81, which could impact businesses, traffic and walkability of the area. Some council members had strong concerns about a lack of options with the current draft report and what actual choice that Robbinsdale will have in a future route.
“My intention is not to drive a wedge between us and the project office at all, but it is to get their attention,” said Pat Backen, who represents Ward 4. “I want more answers before we make a decision that for the next 100 years is going to completely up-end this city. I don’t have enough information.”
Council member George Selman agreed with Backen’s points.
“I think our resolution should be, we don’t want this on 81, period,” said Selman, who represents Ward 3. “Let that be the starting point.”
Council member Sheila Webb who represents Ward 2 expressed a desire for light rail in the city, but not for some elements of the route.
“Two stops in one mile is not rapid transit,” said Webb.”I wish we could find a way to bring the transit system here and have it work for Robbinsdale.”
The council approved the draft modification report with the concerns attached, and will have the opportunity to give municipal consent later in the process.