Groundbreaking ceremony held Wednesday for new Gold Line in east metro

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A groundbreaking ceremony was held Wednesday morning for a new transit service across the eastern Twin Cities metro area.

The 10-mile Gold Line will connect St. Paul, Maplewood, Landfall, Oakdale and Woodbury, and is expected to help people access job centers, housing, transit stations and other destinations along Interstate 94. It will also be Minnesota’s first bus rapid transit line, which operates mostly within bus-only lanes and includes heated shelters.

The Gold Line is expected to run all day in both directions with access to park-and-ride lots.

During Wednesday’s groundbreaking, Minnesota’s U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar was among those celebrating, as she helped push for federal funds to support the new line, which is estimated to cost more than half a billion dollars.

“The project is going to receive nearly $240 million in funding through the Federal Transit Administration,” Klobuchar said.

Others who attended included Minnesota’s U.S. Senator Tina Smith, Minnesota’s U.S. Representative Betty McCollum, and commissioners from Ramsey and Washington counties.

Construction will take a few years and service is expected to start in 2025.