Light rail gets a name, new logo

Metro Transit logo
The Metropolitan Council unveiled a new logo for Metro Transit.
Courtesy of the Metropolitan Council

The Twin Cities light rail system is getting a new name.

Under a plan the Metropolitan Council approved Wednesday, the light rail and rapid transit lines will be known as "Metro" once the Central Corridor line opens in 2014

The system will feature a "T" logo instead of an "M," said Metro Transit General Manager Brian Lamb.

The decision was made after brand testing a variety of logos.

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"The qualities that people associated with the "T" logo are really solid ones that we really want to build the system around," Lamb said. "That's reliability [and] the system approach toward transit."

Lamb says the Hiawatha light rail line will become the blue line and the Central Corridor will be the green line.

Future bus rapid transit lines along Interstate 35W and Cedar Avenue will be the orange and red lines, respectively.

Work could start as early as next Thursday on the south side of University Avenue at Hamline in St. Paul, the Metropolitan Council said.

In Minneapolis, crews will tear up the north side of University Avenue at 29th Avenue and head east toward the city limits.

The first year was beset with problems including poor communication with business owners and missing sidewalks.

But project director Mark Fuhrmann said this year the contractor is adding staff along the job site who'll address those concerns.

"Walsh, [the] contractor who is working on the east end of the project, is mobilizing more aggressively with their own crews, with their subcontractors, than they did in 2011," Fuhrmann said.