SWLRT green line extension

Station Area Planning Efforts

Hopkins is the proposed site for three transit stations which would have a significant impact on future development in the city.

Proposed sites of Hopkins transit stations

A station area planning study was completed in 2010 for each of the suburbs that will be connected by the SWLRT, including Hopkins.

In Hopkins, station area planning occured around and within a ½ mile radius of the station locations at Blake Road, in Downtown Hopkins and at Shady Oak Road.

Blake Road Station

Proposed site: just west of Blake Road and north of Excelsior Blvd (approximately 1/2 mile south of Knollwood Mall and 1/2 mile east of the Excelsior Crossings development)



Downtown Hopkins Station

Proposed site: Excelsior Boulevard between 7th and 8th Avenues, Downtown Hopkins (approximately 1/4 mile south of Mainstreet)



Shady Oak Road Station

Proposed site: Near Shady Oak Road and Excelsior Boulevard, on the border of Hopkins and Minnetonka



Planning Approach

The planning approach focused on the development of station area plans that build upon county and municipal planning work while searching for new and creative planning that supports and enhances LRT. Public involvement throughout the process was critical to maintaining the unique identity of Hopkins and ensuring that LRT will be successfully embraced as an amenity for the southwest region.

Contribute Ideas for LRT Station Areas

Submit your ideas on the Southwest LRT station areas and comment on other people’s ideas. Discuss how areas around planned LRT stations should change in anticipation of light rail. Access the interactive tool at www.swbeyondtherails.com.

Additional information

Visit the Southwest Transitway Study Web site.


  • Public Works Director

  • Community Development Coordinator


Previous planning efforts

Beginning in June 2006, the City of Hopkins partnered with Hennepin County and heard from residents through open houses and community meetings in order to determine the best methods for development of light rail transit in Hopkins. The findings are compiled in the October 2007 Hopkins Station Area Plan Final Report 4.5MB, now being used as a guide for further Station Area Planning.

Downtown Station Planning: Student work wins MN APA award

In 2009, three Master of Urban and Regional Planning students from the Humphrey Institute at the University of Minnesota completed a study of 8th Ave S as a connector between the future Downtown Hopkins LRT Station and Mainstreet. The study was given the award for Outstanding Student Project by the Minnesota chapter of the American Planning Association. 

That study in particular highlighted the need for a “pedestrian seductive” experience along 8th Avenue South through streetscape improvements, active first floor uses, and circulation options from the station throughout Downtown.