By Laura Yuen, Minnesota Public Radio News
A nearly $1 billion proposal to link St. Paul and Minneapolis is as close as it's ever been to becoming a reality. But the Central Corridor light rail project still faces significant opposition. The acrimony comes from various corners, ranging from the state's largest university to a small neighborhood coalition of African-Americans in St. Paul.
The debate over this train has been going on for decades. While elected officials have been talking and planning, two other major rail projects have been completed.
Some critics of Central Corridor say the project has been challenged by ideological differences among various stakeholders -- as well as state and national politics.
Of all the controversies facing the future Central Corridor light-rail line, a dispute with the University of Minnesota has received the most attention. Both the U of M and the Metropolitan Council are powerful public institutions, and their conflict has complicated the project.
Some African-Americans in St. Paul see parallels between the light-rail line planned for University Avenue and the construction of I-94 in the 1950s, which plowed through the old Rondo neighborhood and still stirs emotions.
Not everyone whose families lost their Rondo houses to the I-94 freeway project is fighting light rail. These three men have emerged in the Central Corridor debate, and their own lives have been touched by Rondo.
The Central Corridor light-rail line is the largest public works project ever built in Minnesota. Here's a brief summary.
Building the largest public-works project in Minnesota history is complex -- and confusing. Here are some of the key players involved.
A number of controversies have emerged over the last several years of planning for the Central Corridor. Here are some of the more notable ones.