Met Council Grants $15M to Projects Near Transit Lines

The grants will result in the addition of 1,246 housing units and help create about 2,000 jobs, according to the Metropolitan Council.

The Metropolitan Council on Tuesday said it has approved nearly $15.4 million in grants that will help fund 17 metro-area development projects along light-rail lines and bus routes.

The projects will collectively result in the addition of 1,246 housing units, including affordable units, and leverage nearly $272 million in additional public and private investment, according to the Met Council. They will also help create about 1,000 construction jobs and another 1,000 full- and part-time jobs, the council said.

The grants, which are part of the Met Council's Transit Oriented Development program, were awarded to high-density, mixed-use development projects that are near transit stations or bus stops, and designed to be pedestrian friendly, the Met Council said.

Five of the grants will go to development projects in St. Paul, five to projects in Minneapolis, and the remainder for development in the suburbs. Projects include housing units near the Prospect Park Station in Minneapolis, a $1.5 million refurbishing of the Lyndale Garden Center in Richfield, and mixed-use developments near the Hamline station in St. Paul.

The funds came from the council's Livable Communities program, which previously awarded grants to communities, but received the money back when development projects did not move forward as planned during the recession.

“Investing in development and job growth along corridors is a council priority as we work toward our goal of a 21st-century transit system,” Met Council Chair Susan Haigh said in a statement. “As we continue to build out the region's transit system, we need to ensure that transit and development investments go hand-in-hand.”

The Met Council said that it received 28 applications for the grants, which were awarded on a competitive basis.