Podcast #15 – Talking Golden Valley Light Rail with Paula Pentel

This week’s podcast is a conversation with Paula Pentel, coordinator of the Urban Studies Program at the University of Minnesota, and a council member in the city of Golden Valley, a first ring suburb located just West of Minneapolis. We met in Paula’s office on the West Bank Campus of the University of Minnesota to talk about urban planning and politics in Golden Valley, which has a unique set of challenges involving corporate campuses, tax sharing policies, and suburban infill projects. Above all, Golden Valley is in the midst of a heated urban planning debate over the proposed Bottineau Light Rail project, which would run NorthWest from downtown Minneapolis. The current debate is over which route the rail line should take, either through North Minneapolis, one of the city’s densest and poorest neighborhoods, or through Golden Valley, where the route runs through a lot of park land. From her position on the advisory committee and at the City Council, Paula Pentel gave me an inside look at the debate and process for this important Twin Cities transit project. I hope you enjoy our conversation.

The file is here. You can subscribe to the whole thing on iTunes.

Bill Lindeke

About Bill Lindeke

Pronouns: he/him

Bill Lindeke has writing blogging about sidewalks and cities since 2005, ever since he read Jane Jacobs. He is a lecturer in Urban Studies at the University of Minnesota Geography Department, the Cityscape columnist at Minnpost, and has written multiple books on local urban history. He was born in Minneapolis, but has spent most of his time in St Paul. Check out Twitter @BillLindeke or on Facebook.