Archive | Trains

Trip Report: Amtrak Empire Builder Chicago-St. Paul

How about the train? Way back in December I had already planned most of my 3-month summer tour of Europe, but I hadn’t decided on how I would return home. I narrowed my options to a flight from Europe directly to Minneapolis (boring, but the quickest), fly from Europe to Chicago and then Amtrak to […]

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A Regional Rail System for the Twin Cities

Following my post on potential Twin Cities rapid transit routes, which you can find here, next is the topic of regional/commuter rail in the Twin Cities region. Minnesota has one example of regional rail; the Northstar Line between Minneapolis and Big Lake in the northwest region operating on existing BNSF Railway track. The Northstar Line is how […]

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My First Bikepacking Trip! Part 2 of 3

Here is Part 1 in the series.   We took the first Northstar headed out of town, at the crack of 11 am. We just barely made it to the platform in time: I had to rearrange some of my pack, and it took us a couple tries to find how to get down to the station from […]

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Living in Union Depot

May 21, 2016 Lowertown, Downtown 15 miles The grand and solemn Saint Paul Union Depot is a train station. Although this seems patently obvious, Union Depot in fact took a 43 year break – from 1971 until 2014 – as the train station for Saint Paul. Today, Saint Paul Union Depot is a transit hub, […]

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The Original Dan Patch Line: LRT Potential

Please note that this should not be confused with the Dan Patch Corridor, a proposed regional/commuter/intercity rail line between Minneapolis and Northfield, and possibly further south. The original Dan Patch Line, known as the High Line, was built in 1910 between South Minneapolis and Northfield. Before the Dan Patch Line (later Minneapolis Northfield & Southern […]

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Join streets.mn December 9 for a Holiday Train Northstar trip!

After the success of the streets.mn Red Line trip, I started thinking about other trips that could be done to mix streets.mn with some of the new-ish transit modes that many of us don’t use often. With Metro Transit running a holiday train on December 9, the timing works out comfortably for us to do […]

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From the Fairest Creatures We Desire Increase: Notes on MetroTransit’s Fare Raise

On October 1st, Metro Transit will increase fares on all buses and trains by 25 cents.  While that small dollar amount may seem inconsequential, this decision comes as a culmination to a protracted debate.  Transit advocates have argued that the fare increase unfairly and disproportionately affects the poor. Proponents do not necessarily disagree, but argue […]

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Board Here with Bikes

Within the past few days, if you’ve been at either the 38th or 46th Street stations on the Blue Line, you may have noticed new navigational markings on the platforms. Metro Transit is testing platform decals that show riders with bikes where the light rail doors will be closest to the bike racks inside the […]

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Lessons from Norway for Minnesota Passenger Rail

When talking about expanding passenger train service in Minnesota and other parts of the U.S., it’s common to be told that our area of the country has cities that are too small and spread out for it to ever work. Supposedly, only the Northeast and a few other heavily-populated areas have the population and travel […]

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Just Ryde’n Around

  August 14, 2015 Macalester-Groveland, Merriam Park, Lexington-Hamline, Como Park 16.2 Miles   Cleveland Avenue, because of its proximity to my house, is the north-south street on which I ride most often. Despite that, I am still surprised by a sight or two on or near Cleveland. On Selby Avenue, three houses east of Cleveland, […]

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