Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Northern Lights Express

Northern Lights Express project

Map of the Northern Lights Express corridor

View full-size map

The Northern Lights Express (NLX) is a proposed higher speed passenger rail project that would provide rail service between Minneapolis and Duluth. If constructed, NLX will operate on approximately 152 miles of existing BNSF rail corridor.

Current status

The Federal Railroad Administration completed an environmental review and approved the service development plan in early 2018. The project is eligible for an 80% federal matching grant, contingent upon securing state funding.

Next steps

  • Secure capital and operating funding
  • Complete all necessary agreements with BNSF Railway and Amtrak
  • Final design and construction
  • Implementation of service