Archive | Land use

Measuring the Minneapolis-St. Paul Metro Area, and Getting Real with the Map

Some of the many conflicts currently wracking the state of Minnesota Metro vs. Outstate Urban vs. Suburban vs. Rural J. Crew vs. Hollister vs. Carhartt Peel-and-stick brick vs. Beige vinyl siding Cars vs. All else Who in the metro is paying to repave roads in Koochiching County, or, to phrase it incorrectly, where specifically do […]

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Zoning’s Impact on Minneapolis Form

I’ve been re-reading the book Zoned Out on the bus ride to and from work lately, and it got me thinking about Minneapolis and our zoning history. While our whole city follows a rigid grid built largely along streetcar lines, some neighborhoods are clearly more dense than others. Minneapolis implemented its first zoning code in 1924, two years […]

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A Twin Cities Paving Moratorium

Last Wednesday (February 4)  I attended a public presentation by Ramsey County engineers for a proposed redesign of the Randolph and Lexington Avenue intersection. They are proposing to spend a million and a half dollars to purchase four properties on the northeast corner of the intersection and bulldoze them to make space for a dedicated […]

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Portland’s Parking Policies are Still Better Than Ours

Portland, right? Is there a better city to compare ourselves to than Portland? I haven’t been there, but they seem good at things like biking, streetcars (maybe not?), putting birds on other things, and the like. So when a 2 year old story about how Portland re-upped their parking requirements started getting re-circulated, I figured someone should dig […]

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Valuing Industrial Land: Two Examples

Bill Lindeke’s How Should Cities Value Industrial Land? started a great conversation. He finds contradictory information from different sources and wonders whether they are reconcilable. One report finds industrial land use as one of the most productive land uses in a city, yet tax value per acre shows a different story. Which is right? Both points […]

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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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Selling Parklands to Save Them

Yesterday on Twitter I suggested selling part of Iris Park in Saint Paul to developers for housing. Right across from Fairview Ave station is this desolate park. I say sell part of it off for building. http://t.co/QoqWrw1UTr — Evan Roberts (@evanrobertsnz) December 17, 2014 The reaction was mixed. Lots of people love Iris Park; I […]

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