Legislative Priorities

2024 Legislative Priorities

The Alliance supports funding, building, operating, and maintaining a robust multimodal transportation system along the I-35W corridor between Elko New Market and downtown Minneapolis. The I-35W corridor’s transportation system should reduce congestion, improve safety, and enable the metropolitan area and the state of Minnesota to better compete economically with other areas of the United States and the world. The Alliance urges the legislature to provide state dollars for the local match for federal funding opportunities.

While the Alliance principally focuses on I-35W, it also recognizes the impact that changes to the wider transportation system may have on I-35W. Accordingly, it may undertake advocacy related to other north and south arterials including Hwy 169 and Hwy 77/Cedar Avenue, and east and west connectors, including I-494, Hwy 62 (Crosstown), and Hwy 13.

35W Solutions Alliance Goal
To facilitate the movement of people and goods in the I-35W corridor and surrounding transportation system.

As a multi-jurisdictional Joint Powers Board, the members of the Alliance will pursue the following outcomes during the upcoming legislative session:

Highway Funding

Support additional transportation revenues to meet needs related to the I-35W traffic-shed, identified in MnDOT’s 10-Year Capital Highway Investment Plan and the Metropolitan Council’s Transportation Policy Plan.

Strategies for Highways:

  • Support increased revenues and bonding authority for construction of priority improvements
  • Provide bonding authority for the Local Road Improvement Program
  • Support funding for programs such as Corridors of Commerce and Transportation for Economic Development

Priorities for Highways include:

  • Replacement / Expansion of the I-35 bridge over CSAH 50, including adjacent capacity expansion and safety improvements from CSAH 42 and CSAH 60 (185th St)
  • 82nd Street / I-35W interchange (I-494 Airport to 169 project Element 5 – part of Phase 2)
  • Remaining Phase 2 mobility or safety improvements on I-494 from the Airport to 169 project, especially remaining elements from CSAH 32 (Penn Ave) to Hwy 77 (Cedar Ave)
  • Mobility and safety improvements on Hwy 169 from Hwy 13 to I-494 
  • Hwy 13 mobility and safety improvements between Port of Savage and Nicollet Ave
  • Mobility and safety improvements on Hwy 77 (Cedar Avenue) from CSAH 38 (McAndrews Rd) to I-494

Transit Operating and Capital Funding

Support adequate capital and operating funding for transit systems to achieve the goals of the regional 2040 Transportation Policy Plan (TPP).

Strategies for Transit:

  • Support funding, including adequate general fund appropriations, to operate and maintain the regional transit system, including LRT, BRT, express and regular route services
  • Encourage and support the Metropolitan Council to use its regional levy authority to the full extent authorized by the Legislature
  • Oppose policies or legislation that restrict the study of potential transit corridors in the Twin Cities region

Priorities for Transit include:

  • Provide adequate funding for expansion of the arterial Bus Rapid Transit system, particularly lines that parallel I-35W (METRO E Line, future Nicollet, Penn, or Lyndale corridors)
  • Support full scoping of all Bus Rapid Transit capital projects to align and collaborate with local governments, and be transparent to all funding partners regarding the full cost to implement projects along local corridors
  • Support adequate funding for micro-transit services, especially services that support “last mile” access to the regular route transit system or serve transit-dependent populations.