At this point is seems like endangered water under the expensively reconstructed bridge, but (via Brendon Slotterback’s Twitter), here’s a chart from a 2007 document from back in the Southwest Light Rail (SWLRT) planning daze.
Here are the projected boardings for the different modes and alignments that were on the table at the time:
As Slotterback says, “Route 3A (the selected route) was projected to have lower average boardings than 3C.”
Slotterback also points out that current costs for the project, now called the “Green Line Extension”, have reached the original “higher” cost of the 3C route.
For much more on SWLRT alignment decision, check out the streets.mn archives.