Just three years ago, only 1% said housing was the No. 1problem. This year, 16% cited housing as the top issue, up from 10%last year. Of those polled, 23% cite transportation, mostly trafficor congestion, as the No. 1 problem, compared to just 3% to 4% ofpeople responding to the survey between 1993 and 1995. Overall,metro-area residents continueto give the region high marks forquality of life -- although that perception is eroding alittle.

Metropolitan Council chair Ted Mondale says he's concerned thatgrowing congestion may be affecting how residents perceive the TwinCities area. The survey further shows very strong support – 71% --for transportation alternatives. "The Minnesota House isclearly outof step with public opinion on this issue," says Mondale, whoseagency is in charge of the Metropolitan Transit Commission, whichruns the public bus lines. "The House has supported a level offunding that, if it prevails, will force significant cuts inbusservice that will affect thousands of people throughout theregion."

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