The following comes from information released by TwinWest Chamber of Commerce:
Local chambers of commerce were excited by some news out of the White House yesterday.
The Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, Eden Prairie Chamber of Commerce, Edina Chamber of Commerce, Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce, and TwinWest Chamber of Commerce have been working together to secure support for the Southwest Light Rail Transit (Southwest LRT) line that would serve Minneapolis, St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka and Eden Prairie.
Yesterday, the White House announced plans to expedite the permitting approval process for Southwest LRT, with a goal of completing all federal permitting and review of the project by November 2014.
The announcement is part of President Obama’s “We Can’t Wait” initiative. Southwest LRT was one of two projects in yesterday’s announcement.
“This is great news for commuters, workers, and job providers in the Twin Cities," TwinWest Chamber Director of Government Affairs Judy Johnson said on behalf of the state’s five largest local chambers of commerce. "Southwest LRT is strongly supported by Minnesotans, the business community, and cities in the southwest metro. We need more transportation options if we’re going to grow jobs and stay competitive with other regions."
It is believed by the chambers that the Southwest LRT will help serve 60,000 new private sector workers, provide 10 million rides a year, improve the region’s quality of life and reduce traffic congestion.