Thousands Catch Ride on Green Line for Opening Day

Updated: 06/15/2014 4:48 PM
Created: 06/14/2014 2:12 PM
By: Kate Renner

A link between Minneapolis and St. Paul was completed Saturday, as the METRO Green Line rolled with passengers for the first time.

Fare was free for riders. Metro Transit said the trains supplied around 11,000 rides from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday. There are free rides through midnight Sunday.

Westbound trains were temporarily stopped after a car got stuck on the tracks in St. Paul on Saturday afternoon, according to Metro Transit. Service was expected to be back to normal by the evening.

The running trains marked the first time the Twin Cities have been connected in 60 years. The $957 million, 11-mile ride is the largest public works project in Minnesota history.

Once people get used to taking the Green Line, it's estimated 40,000 people will begin taking it daily; making it one of the busiest public transit options in the Twin Cities.

Thousands of people showed up at the Union Depot to watch the Green Line, which also goes through the University of Minnesota's campus, make its inaugural ride.

Several community members and lawmakers comment on the project Saturday: 

"The timeline for this project spanned the current century and millennium, and it must seem that long for many of you who were a part of it from it's inception," - Governor Mark Dayton.

"We're changing transportation in the United States of America," - Sen. Amy Klobuchar.

"It's about connecting one neighborhood to another, it's about one city connected to another," - Susan Haigh, Chair of the Metropolitan Council.

"Often history is defined in terms of great moments in transportation, and this is no exception," said Mayor Chris Coleman, St. Paul.

"I just wanted to see history made," - Gail Hansen, St. Paul resident.

Minneapolis/St. Paul

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