After a torturous, blundering, contentious planning process to route a commuter train from the southwest suburbs into downtown Minneapolis, it’s finally come to this: on May 13, 2019, the Kenilworth Trail will be closed and earthmovers will lumber in a few days later to scrape the corridor clean.
The battle has gone on for almost 40 years (see the October 1984 Hill & Lake Press front page, below), and it’s been epic. The loss of irreplaceable urban woodlands and critical pollinator habitat will be felt by the hundreds of thousands of people who bike, walk, and savor the Kenilworth Corridor’s rare oasis of open-air beauty. The loss will also be felt by the couple hundred thousand Minneapolis residents who will never get to use the train, even though their taxes are paying for it, because this $2-billion mass-transit behemoth completely bypasses the densely populated south side of the city.
Here is the story from the April 26, 2019, Hill & Lake Press.
Here is an August 2009 article, “Southwest Minneapolis’ Transit Route Selection Process May Rule Out Light Rail to Uptown,” from The Transport Politic website, detailing why the Kenilworth route was “the wrong decision.” The reasons from ten years ago are even more valid today. The highlights are mine.
Here is the front page of the October 1984 Hill & Lake Press, with its prescient headline.