The Streets.MN Network

Streets.MN is a non-profit network of Minnesota-based writers. We each posts anywhere from about 1 to 3 times per month. Beyond that, we each have our own blogs [see here] that have original content not posted on Streets.MN. I wanted to take time to highlight some of our writers blogs and recent posts.

Quick Promo: Free the 23rd of October at 6pm? Join Strong Towns on Tap 2. RSVP on Facebook.

Here we go …

Brendon has a calm and collected way of intellectually body slamming bad ideas. Take, for example, this recent post on the Southwest Corridor’s proposed DEIS: LRT will reduce development potential on Nicollet, says SW Transitway DEIS.


From the Southwest Transitway Draft EIS (page 5-18) in regard to the Nicollet/11th & 12th street alignments and their consistency with land use plans:

The area along Segment C-1 is already developed as TOD due to high frequency transit service. Implementation of LRT and the accompanying reduction in bus service may reduce TOD development potential which is inconsistent with regional and local plans.

So reduced bus service, even with the addition of LRT, means less development potential. Nobody tell the Met Council.  Here is what the Central Corridor EIS has to say about TOD near LRT stations:

Experience across the country has shown, that implementation of fixed guideway transit can catalyze economic development activities at station locations.

The above excerpt is related to what I’ve now started to call the “Train in the Woods”. While Brendon doesn’t write often, when he does post it’s a slam dunk.

Bill is one of the Twin Cities’ most prolific writers (7 years!). Honestly, I don’t know how he does it. Whenever I’m about to write something, I check his blog. Chances are he’s already covered it (and articulated an argument more educated than my own). Also, Bill produces Minnesota’s best podcast [that’s not a joke, the Streets.MN podcast is getting really, really good].

As s0meone who spent way too much time and money on an education in urban and regional planning, I feel like I was classically conditioned to dislike traffic engineers. I can’t dislike Reuben. In fact, he’s kind of a bad ass (in like, a good way). He builds garages with his bare hands and then even takes time out of his day to answer questions from the mailbag. Velo Traffic is a great resource for those with questions about biking and traffic.

When I’m complaining about things, Sam is proposing constructive ideas. He had a great post recently (it sparked the attention of MPR) that offered some real solutions for Hiawatha Avenue. If you’re not familiar with Sam’s work, I recommend bookmarking his site.

If I could have multiple drinks with anyone on Streets.MN, it’d be Alex. He’s a funny, well-versed, smart and brilliantly researched writer who tackles issues with an advanced level of sarcasm and wit. His posts are funny. Yet, more importantly, they are poignant [for example: here, here, and here].

We get more hits from David’s website than any other source outside of Twitter and Facebook. I’ve thought many times that David might be too smart for Streets.MN. He’s the only writer where you’ll find this on his blog:

R_{q} = R_{q-1} + A * D


R_{q} ≤ G + B/(Y*N*4)

A = 1 if D < 0,

A = G if D ≥ 0


R_{q} = tax rate at quarter q (%), applied to all spending, e.g. VAT. 

A = Adjustment factor

G = government spending share of GDP (Y) (%)

D = quarterly change in GDP (%) (D= (Y_{q} – Y{q-1}) / Y{q-1})

N= number of years to pay off debt

B = sum total of borrowed funds, i.e. debt, in net present value terms

Y = GDP (dollars) quarterly

I don’t get it. That being said, David is a genius and when he says something I think that people genuinely listen (Streets.MN is lucky to have him on the team).

Streets.MN has a lot people in our extended network who don’t blog often, write occasionally, cross-post, continue the conversation and help out behind the scenes. Guest writers have been great, too! Every bit of help is appreciated and I’m glad I have the opportunity to work with such a talented and ambitious group of people.

Sincerely – Nate

P.S. Our new logo should launch soon. Stay tuned.