The Metropolitan Transit Authority will look to the Federal Transit Administration for help funding the University line. The FTA has yet to approve Metro's environmental impact study for the line, a key element in moving the project forward.
"I'm feeling the frustration of a lot of people in this organization who are trying to get through this process," Metro spokesman George Smalley said Thursday.
He also conceded the University line may not be completed along with the other lines by 2012, as Metro had projected. That, in turn, could affect the completion of the Uptown line.
That is because the east-west University line would connect the 4.7-mile Uptown line with the rest of the MetroRail system.
In other words, no University line, no Uptown train.
"It wouldn't be prudent to build the Uptown line if we had no hope for the University line," President and CEO Frank J. Wilson said Wednesday. "But if the University line is proceeding as we expect, then there's not a reason to hold Uptown back either. It's a carefully choreographed set of moves here."