Author Archive | Sam Newberg

Drinking My Way Around England

English pubs are among the premier “third places” in the world. Despite rumors of their death, they remain vital to the community and I’m impressed by how well they fit in to the urban (and rural) fabric. The English pub is a great place to gather with friends or strangers. They are also quite amenable […]

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The Commons – Some Observations

Since The Commons opened this summer, I’ve visited a few times and passed by several times, making a point of counting patrons and observing how people use this new public green downtown space. After all, how people use a new park is the best indicator of success, right? Here is a collection of observations so […]

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Proving a Sense of Place

It is fair to say defining a “sense of place” is a tricky proposition at best. Wikipedia’s definition is a good starting point, but remains incomplete. I’ve been struggling for almost two decades to define it, but it still eludes me. I just know it when I see it. Somewhat similar is this year’s presidential […]

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Make Boulevards Great Again

With so much attention paid to buildings and streets and how they relate to each other, we must remember the boulevard is a very important piece of public infrastructure, requiring careful consideration and planning. I’ve observed some very good examples of boulevards that are appropriate for their urban context, and others that need some work. […]

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The Lived-In City

At dinner last night at Shaw’s Crab House in Chicago, my wife and I were trying to find the word to describe why we liked the place so well. Miller’s Pub in Chicago and Murray’s Steakhouse in our own Minneapolis are similar in this regard. Shaw’s is old without being aged, clean without being immaculate, […]

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U.S. Bank Stadium – A Review

If there is a billion dollar view to be had in Minnesota, it is from the concourse above the lower bowl on the east side of the stadium. There I stood last Wednesday, leaning one of those tall tables that line the concourses, beer in hand, gazing across the immaculate grass field toward the downtown […]

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Detroit Still Exists

I spent a few days last month in downtown Detroit at CNU 24. CNU is smart enough to host their annual “congress” in and around the city. We spent not a single moment in a conference center, but rather in beautiful old theaters, bars, parks, pop-up event spaces with food trucks, tables, vendors and Ping-Pong, and informal gathering spots. In […]

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Sunday Summary – June 26, 2016

I’m pinch-hitting for Betsey this Sunday, and just for fun, I think I’ll go from youngest to oldest with regard to general topic. Before I do that, on behalf of streets.mn, I’d like to thank those of you who attended our event with this past Wednesday with Gustavo Gutierrez. We’ll start with Emily Metcalfe’s tale […]

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Denver Union Station

With Denver on the FasTracks, Hoping the Twin Cities Aren’t Derailed

Last month Denver opened its long-awaited A Line train service connecting downtown and Denver International Airport. The twenty-three mile service takes thirty-seven minutes and costs nine dollars each way. The important fact that Minneapolis has had downtown to airport train service for 12 years notwithstanding, the opening of Denver’s A Line is symbolic of something much more. The […]

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