Category: Railroads

Amtrak’s Empire Builder: The Train that Deserves Better

Amtrak’s Empire Builder, the only intercity rail service in Minnesota, will be reduced from daily to tri-weekly service beginning in October due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. I decided to take it one more time before the cuts went into effect, as there’s no way of knowing how long it’ll be before daily […]

Tunnels of the Twin Cities Suburbs

Notable Tunnels of the Twin Cities Suburbs

Many suburbs have retrofitted bicycle infrastructure, usually so that vulnerable users won’t slow automotive throughput. Along the way, many of these projects have spawned tunnels, which are always fun.

Streets Sidewalk

National Links: Fast Trains, Bad Sidewalks and Rezoning Miami

Every day at The Overhead Wire we collect news about cities and send the links to our email list. At the end of the week we take some of the most popular stories and post them to Greater Greater Washington, a group blog similar to streets.mn that focuses on urban issues in the D.C. region. […]

Mn Regional Rail Routes

A Comprehensive Transit Overhaul for the Twin Cities: Part III

This is the final entry of a three-part series detailing the rapid transit and regional rail requirements for the Twin Cities to become a transit-oriented, climate-neutral metropolitan region. The prior two weeks looked at rail rapid transit and bus rapid transit, respectively. This article will focus on regional rail in the Twin Cities and Greater […]

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A Comprehensive Transit Overhaul for the Twin Cities: Part I

This is the first of a three-part series, published today and the next two Mondays, detailing the rapid transit and regional rail requirements for the Twin Cities to become a transit-oriented, climate-neutral metropolitan region. Today’s entry focuses on rail rapid transit. Next week will cover bus rapid transit, while the final article will look at […]

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The Minnesota Intercity Passenger Rail Plan – Getting Back On Track?

Public transportation policy and funding in Minnesota over the past several years – if not decades – has focused on roads, bridges and airports.  As Minnesota’s population changes, these modes alone cannot satisfy all of our transportation needs.  The time has come for investment in a truly multi-modal transportation system.   Many Midwestern states have invested […]

Amtrak Bike

Intercity Rail Would Bridge Minnesota’s So-called “Rural-Urban Divide”

A few months ago, I was privileged to be a guest lecturer for a colleague’s environmental sociology course at the UW-La Crosse. For those unfamiliar, La Crosse, Wisconsin is one of the larger small cities in the region. It’s a city with a metro area of about 130,000 people located in a magnificent spot on […]

Notes From the Minnesota Statewide Passenger Rail Plan Meeting

On Jan 7, a meeting on the Minnesota Statewide Passenger Rail plan was held at the McColl Pond Environmental Learning Center in Savage, and streets.mn was invited to join other local media outlets and elected officials to hear about updates to the plan. No one else from streets.mn said they were going, so, because I […]

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Trains, Planes, or Cars: Which is the Most Carbon-Efficient Way to Travel?

Many of us traveled for the holidays, and many of the Streets community shared their experiences of traveling by Amtrak. It is very true that when moving on flat ground in a straight line, trains on steel wheels and rails are the most efficient form of transportation. Rolling on steel rails reduces rolling resistance and […]