The podcast this week is a conversation with Ben Garland, a Duluth resident who runs a small business in the hillside neighborhood. Over the last year or so, Garland has been organizing to try and change the design for a street reconstruction project on Superior Street in downtown Duluth. Superior Street is Duluth’s main street, and there’s a huge reconstruction project planned for the next two years where the city will be re-doing all the curbs and pavement in the heart of downtown.
Garland spent much of the 2017 trying to get the city to re-design and re-think some of its intersection treatments on Superior Street, especially to improve the pedestrian experience there. I was in Duluth this winter and looked up Ben Garland at his home, in the middle of a snowstorm in very cold weather. We chatted for a long while about his efforts, some of the frustrations he had dealing with the community engagement and public policy process in Duluth, and what his vision for a better Superior Street and a more walkable Duluth might look like.
We had a great chat, and I hope you enjoy it.