Metro Transit previews Green Line opening

Green Line driver
Metro Transit held a preview of the new Green Line June 7, 2014. The $957 million project officially opens June 14.
Chris Roberts/MPR News

Members of the media got a chance to ride the new light rail line connecting St. Paul and Minneapolis Saturday. The $957 million Central Corridor Green Line officially opens next Saturday, June 14.

Officials predict the Green Line will help trigger a new era of growth and economic prosperity for the region.

Money train? Backers say Green Line will deliver dollars, development

Met Council Chair Susan Haigh called the grand opening a historic event in the future of this region.

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"We've got the blue line, the green line, and now we're integrating all of our transit service to connect super well with this investment, and. you know, it's the beginning of growth and economic prosperity for the region," she said.

Metro Transit General Manager Brian Lamb said he hopes as many riders as possible start to envision the Green Line as part of their regular transportation.

"I really want people to come and try out the Green Line, and the combination of the Green Line and the Blue Line, and the combination of how the bus system all fits together, and open your mind a little bit to...can this work for me?"

To mark the grand opening next Saturday, there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony at St. Paul's Union Depot at 9 a.m., and other celebrations along the Green Line route throughout the day. All Metro Transit service next Saturday and Sunday will be free.

Disclosure: Minnesota Public Radio and the Metropolitan Council are negotiating ways to reduce noise and vibrations from the newly built light rail line outside MPR headquarters under a contract agreed to in 2009.