As the 17-mile Orange Line BRT project was in the final planning and approval stages, Metro Transit required assistance to address station location and preliminary design recommendations previously hindered by differing opinions. Critical issues were focused at the proposed south terminus in Burnsville and included connectivity between I-35W and local destinations in the Heart of the City, routing and travel time questions, and coordination between Metro Transit and Minnesota Valley Transit Authority (MVTA).
Bolton & Menk refined transit concepts and station locations, including consideration of costs, travel times, pedestrian accessibility, service to local destinations, and interconnectivity of the Orange Line with MVTA routes. Several concepts were developed through facilitation of meetings to compare the performance of station site and layout options as well as bus routing, travel time, and long-term service characteristics. Cost estimates and layouts for improvements, including a ramp-meter bypass lane for bus entrance operations at I-35W and Burnsville Parkway, were also developed.
The study supported stakeholder consensus to develop a dedicated BRT station in the southwest quadrant of Highway 13 and Nicollet Avenue, with an option for an additional stop at Burnsville Parkway near I-35W. This concept is the preferred configuration of the Orange Line BRT in Burnsville.