Author Archive | Nathaniel M Hood

Local Control Over Speed Limits: Slow Cars and Save Lives

On my bike. About 5:30pm. St. Paul. I was traveling down Highland Parkway westbound towards the river at what I thought was a good downhill pace. The tree-lined median makes for a tight space, so I was hugging the right curb and weaving around the occasional parked car. From behind, I hear a rumbling muffler. It […]

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A Neighborhood Pizza Joint Needs a Neighborhood

The Twin Cities pizza chain Davanni’s is celebrating its 40th birthday with a facelift. It wants to be young again and recapture its original glory as the neighborhood pizza joint. In a recent article, the Star Tribune reported that many young millennials do not associate Davanni’s with their local neighborhood businesses, but rather think of it as a chain. And I know why. The […]

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The Infrastructure Debate in a Nutshell

Minnesota’s bridges are still out there aging as the title of this opinion piece by Lori Sturdevant announces. When it hit the pages of the Star Tribune earlier this week Sturdevant makes the argument that transportation funding at the State level is needed or taxpayers will “pay a high price if they continue their habit of […]

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For Sale: Pedestrian Safety Kit (ONLY $49.99)!

FOR SALE: Pedestrian Safety Kit – $79.99 … NOW Only $49.99 The City of Robbinsdale’s Mayor Regan Murphy has officially proclaimed May as “Step To It” Month. Robbinsdale joins communities in Hennepin County that aim to encourage residents to live healthier lifestyles and record their movements. Read the Full Proclamation here. To win this friendly competition, residents are going […]

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Should Minneapolis Build an Urban Soccer Stadium?

Professional soccer is coming to Minneapolis, probably. Sports Illustrated reported last week that Minnesota United is likely the next addition to Major League Soccer. This is exciting news for many. For others, it begs the question: Do we need another stadium? I’ll leave the politics to Alex Schieferdecker. Instead, I wanted to ask the question: […]

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Minneapolis: An Urban Transformation?

Minneapolis has undergone a tremendous amount of urban growth in the past seven years. And, for all the complaints constructive-criticism that we, at, have provided, it should be noted that Minneapolis has truly transformed into a better, more dynamic urban place. Google Streetview has opened up its archives (dating back to 2007 in the Twin […]

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The Nicollet Mall Redesign and the Failure of Planning

“Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” – Jane Jacobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities The biggest impediment to improving Nicollet Mall is not the aesthetic of the street, but the buildings themselves and their poor frontages. This fact is apparently lost […]

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The Impending Decline of Second-Ring Suburbs

There is a small war going on in America’s second-ring suburbs. As many places cautiously emerge out of the housing recession, the uptick in new development has been at odds with concerned citizens, elected officials, developers and long-range community plans. Aging suburbia is going through an identity crisis. The only word that comes to mind: bipolar. To best describe […]

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