Welcome to October! Election season is well underway now. In addition to the 2017 Voter Guide, streets.mn is co-sponsoring (with Our Streets Minneapolis) a Mayoral Forum on Equitable and Sustainable Transportation for Minneapolis mayoral candidates on October 28. streets.mn would love to see a post from you about your experience at the event (yes, you can write for us!).
The Saint Paul City Council approved plans for the redeveloping the Ford site last week and the internet commenters have been busy and so has Julie Kosbab as she fearlessly reads, analyzes, summarizes, and scores the comments both pre- and post-decision withWe Read Ford Site Comments So You Don’t Have To and Part II: We Read Ford Site Hearing Comments So You Don’t Have To. streets.mn has been following the Ford site redevelopment plans, so you can see some additional coverage here and here (both by Bill Lindeke).
More on Saint Paul
The Anthropomorphism of St. Paul’s Bollards by Jeff Christenson looks at the plastic, smashable bollards installed to try to protect people walking and biking from the folks heading to the Starbucks drive through at Snelling and Marshall and the humanizing embellishments added by members of the public. Then, he considers more substantial barriers (like Target’s big red spheres) and asks the important question: “Why are these sturdier bollards more frequently used to protect buildings and the plastic bollards more often used to protect people in bikes or on foot?” The comments debate bollard design, damage to vehicles from bollards, driving habits/culture, and more.
A New Vision Zero for St. Paul: Part 4 – Education is the next installment as Michael Daigh works his way through the 5E’s as he advocates for Saint Paul to become an official Vision Zero city. By comparison with the campaigns to reduce drunk driving, he considers how education can foster cultural change.
It Looks Like the Suburbs in the Central Village neighborhood “tucked between University Avenue and I-94, and Kent and Western Streets…rooted in the urban renewal movement that took root in the 1950s.” Wolfie Browender takes us on another bike ride through space and time in Saint Paul with some history about the urban renewal projects (and also Checker cabs) along with much public art, too.
The Mysterious Case of the Missing Traffic Chaos has Adam Miller testing Jon Tevlin’s assertions in his Strib column that “the combination of detoured traffic from Franklin Avenue (now closed to replace the bridge over 35W) and new bikes lanes on 26th Street and 28th Street was going to result in “traffic chaos” that would be like “push[ing] hamburger through a straw.” Adam found no chaos and no congestion, but did seize the teachable moment to talk about induced demand.
Riding the Red Line with streets.mn is Henry Pan’s recap of the streets.mn event which explored the Red Line from the Mall of America to Apple Valley. It was not all smooth sailing: “When we all boarded the first time, we encountered many hurdles. One of the attendees brought a bicycle, and struggled to bring their bicycle onboard through the narrow and slow rear doors (atypical for a BRT line, by the way) and the passengers onboard, despite the theoretical ease of bicycle access. We also discovered that the reader on the rear door of our bus, which we ended up riding three times that evening, was not only placed on a horizontal orientation, but was also not working. As a result, we all had to board and pay on the front door.” Some suggestions for improvement and possible future streets.mn trips are also offered.
One Chart of the Day: Median Net Worth by Race over Time which puts the racial disparities in net worth and the gap between renters and homeowners in sharp focus…and one Map Monday: Minneapolis and Saint Paul Bike Shops, late 1800s from the Cycling Museum of Minnesota showing the many shops supplying the bike boom of the 1890s.