WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that they have secured more than $239 million in federal funding for the Metro Gold Line Bus Rapid Transit Project. These resources are provided by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and made possible by the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which was enacted in 2021 and championed by Klobuchar and Smith. Specifically, this investment will support the design and construction of this bus rapid transit line connecting downtown St. Paul to eastern Twin Cities suburbs.
“Investments in public transit make it easier for Minnesotans to get to school, work, and other destinations, while reducing traffic congestion and pollution,” said Klobuchar. “This federal funding will support the Metro Gold Line Bus project, helping construct bus-only lanes and providing more reliable transit service between downtown St. Paul and the eastern suburbs. I’ll keep pushing for resources to ensure public transit is safe and reliable for all Minnesotans.”
“Each day, transit systems connect Minnesotans to their jobs, schools, grocery stores and countless other opportunities – all while reducing traffic congestion and pollution,” said Smith, Chair of the Senate Transportation Subcommittee. “The METRO Gold Line will help connect people across the region to jobs, housing options and other key destinations. After years of talking about it, I’m thrilled to announce this project is on its way to serving Minnesotans. I worked hard to deliver on this project and look forward to working with local leaders to support more public transportation projects across the state.”
The Metro Gold Line Bus will provide a reliable connection from Maplewood, Landfall, Oakdale and Woodbury to downtown Saint Paul, with buses slated to run every 10-15 minutes seven days a week. The Metropolitan Council estimates that this transit project will create approximately 4400 jobs.
These investments will enable the construction of seven miles of exclusive bus lanes, facilitate the purchase of seventeen 60-foot buses, and improve bicycle and pedestrian access.
Klobuchar and Smith have long led efforts to strengthen public transit services. Last September, they secured significant federal funding to upgrade rural public transit and improve public transit in the Twin Cities suburbs.
Klobuchar, a member of the Senate Commerce Committee, and Smith supported the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which was enacted in 2021 and makes the largest investment in public transit in U.S. history. The legislation also delivers significant investments to improve the state’s roads, bridges, highways, and water infrastructure.
In 2021, Smith brought Federal Transit Administration Administrator Nuria Fernandez to Minnesota in an effort to showcase local infrastructure projects including the Gold Line. Smith also chaired a Transportation Subcommittee field hearing in Minnesota featuring Administrator Fernandez aimed at elevating transit priorities in Minnesota and raising awareness for the funding opportunities available through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
Smith has been a leader on expanding rural transit and has introduced legislation including the bipartisan Investments in Rural Transit Act with Senators Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) to improve public transportation in rural communities across the country. As Chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation, and Community Development, Smith has led hearings on ways to maximize benefits from the bipartisan Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act for transit in small cities and rural communities.