8/26/2014 3:36:00 PM Legislator seeks to derail zip line project
By David Richards
Rep. Pat Garofalo, R-Farmington, announced last week his intention of introducing legislation to block a proposed high-speed rail project that would travel non stop from Rochester to the Twin Cities.
"It's time to put a stop to government wasting hundreds, if not millions of dollars on studies and other plans for this California-style boondoggle," Garofalo said in a statement.
"With an expected one-way fare of $30, zip line is not a priority for Minnesota families, and it's appalling that Minnesota taxpayers continue to be forced to fit the bill as big government types push forward against the will of local residents."
That last statement is a reference to a recent meeting on the zip rail that took place in Kenyon on July 31.
Hundreds of residents attended, with many voicing there opposition to the plan.
According to the statement, Garofalo plans to introduce the legislation at the next session.
He said his legislation mirrors a similar law passed in 2002 that barred MnDOT from moving forward on the proposed Dan Patch line that would run from Minneapolis to Northfield, with stops in St. Louis Park, Edina, Bloomington, Savage, Burnsville and Lakeville.
Out of the eight proposed routes for the Rochester to Twin Cities zip rail, one of them would move along the Highway 14 corridor, passing through Byron, Kasson, Dodge Center and West Concord.
At 180 mph, the zip rail could get commuters to the Twin Cities at half the time it takes by car.