Sunday Summary – April 19, 2015

Image of Sunday Summary logoWe’re delighted to have been named City Pages Best Local Blog Minneapolis 2015, but “we” could also include you.  You can write for us or  Join Committees and Task Forces to have some impact. Or, you could just take a survey one writer has created to inform a future post: Questioning Our Pedestrian Lives

Wrapping up the tournament madness with the Green Line as the overall champ; here’s the streets.m(ad)n(ess) Postgame Show.

 Vikings and Downtown East Commons

The Vikings Stadium and the environs have sparked much writing here on; this week brings another round of coverage.  The Met Council is Spending $6,000,000 on this Unnecessary Pedestrian Bridge? is incredulous about the price and dubious about the need for this bridge for crossing the street and LRT tracks recently approved by the Metro Council Transportation Committee (the full Council votes April 22, 2015).  This post was far and away the comment winner of the week with some comparison to the Killebrew Bridge at the Mall of America, comparing costs of enforcement and traffic control at grade level, and quite a lot of comments about trolls of the Norwegian/Three Billy Goats Gruff variety.

Two posts look at the Downtown East Commons park. The Case for Closing Portland Avenue in Downtown East picks up a thread from a couple of months ago (see here and here from February 2015) to advocate for closing Portland Avenue to cars through the proposed park.  Taking a far more concrete look, Park Entrances at Downtown East Commons: X Marks the Spot thinks about how to best plan the park to move people into and through it.

DTE Station Layout

Location of proposed pedestrian bridge


The suburb of Hopkins (America’s Raspberry Capital) has not figured prominently in coverage until this week.  It’s Time For Hopkins to Be Selfish looks at possible configurations of Blake Road as it is reconstructed.  Blake Road is also Hennepin County Route 20 and the tension between building a local street which serves Hopkins well and a county highway which moves traffic through Hopkins is obvious; the post provides detailed consideration of plans, alternatives and rationale.  As is often the case with project-based posts, the comments dig into details, compare other projects and add some thoughtful suggestions. Also about Hopkins is this short video about the Southwest LRT – Downtown Hopkins but also about connecting the LRT stations with the heart of downtown.

An example of what a neighborhood-scale Blake Road might look like.

An example of what a neighborhood-scale Blake Road, Hopkins might look like.

Not otherwise classified

These posts don’t fit in any neat categories, but Real Life Graphic Designer Looks at City Logos II: The Return of the Refreshed is a second conversation with a real life graphic designer about local city logos, this time about logos which have been recently revised or redesigned (the first conversation was in 2014). The question I have is why are blue and green so prevalent? Why Do Electric Cars Brake So Often? answers this question directly.  And The Future of the Midtown Greenway Bridges takes a close look at the 37 bridges crossing the greenway, many of which are aging and will need repair or replacement soon; this post shows us details (and provides history) we probably wouldn’t otherwise see.

Minneapolis Logo ca. 1975

Minneapolis Logo ca. 1975

Audio visual department

Charts of the Day and Map of Monday: Vehicle Miles Travelled 2014 (and since 2000) correlates this statistic with economic and demographic data. Central City Share of Subsidized Housing highlights the concentration of subsidized housing in the central city. Map Monday: Time Lapse Photos from 1939 links to a Minneapolis map showing 1938 to 2011/12 aerial photos of Minneapolis where you can slide the bar and see it change.

Videos: Almanzo 100 is a short video about the near legendary gravel race in southeast Minnesota. This free, register-on-a-postcard 100-mile race was created and sustained by Chris Skogen until this year; now the city of Spring Valley is organizing the May 15-17 race weekend (you still register on a postcard).  Southwest LRT – Downtown Hopkins is a Hopkins promotional video about the benefits LRT will bring to downtown Hopkins and what the city will do to link the not-quite-downtown station to the historic downtown.

Photo road trip: Main Street – St. Bonifacius, Minnesota is another photo-trip to a small town which was once the taxi capital of the region (others are here and more are to come).

Graphic novel continues: Bicyclopolis: Episode Seven, The Monorail Cult.

Spring is really here with daffodils but also with worms which cling to bicycle tires (and every other part of the bike) after Spring rains. Get outside and look around your streets, then write about it for us.  Have a great week!

Betsey Buckheit

About Betsey Buckheit

Betsey rides her pretty blue city bike, walks her energetic black dogs, and agitates for more thoughtful, long-range decision-making in Northfield, MN. You can follow her blog at