(Editor’s Note: We asked our readers and writers for their commuter stories. This is Jeremy’s.)
I’ve been a multimodal commuter in Minneapolis since 2005.
I’m now 33 years old (May 12th!) and have been flipping the script on transportation for 13 years.
My first house purchase was in the South Minneapolis neighborhood of Standish.
I lived within a 10 minute walk of the (at the time) brand new Hiawatha Light Rail station at 38th Street.
My first long term job happen to be on Lake Street, 1 stop on the train. It was Cash -N-Pawn.
My Chevy S-10, at the time was slowly falling apart. The transmission had trouble shifting. Usually needing to be warmed up for close to 15 minutes before being able to drive it, so I started looking into the options I had in my new neighborhood.
When I lived in Columbia Heights as a kid, I rode my bike like most of us kids did. We went around a 1 mile radius or so on neighborhood streets. When I got a bit closer to my mid teens, I started exploring the possibility of walking down my street to Central Avenue and catching a city bus.
I waited until I was 18 years old to get my driver’s license. I didn’t feel the same itch as my brothers to get behind the wheel. Plus, I was responsible for funding my first car, I at the time, I wasn’t interested in that proposition.
The first trips I took were on Route 10 to Northtown Mall. Back then, It was still “cool” to hangout at the mall. This ability to get myself around, instead of relying on Mom to cab us kids around made me feel freedom beyond the small radius a bicycle could get me at the time.
After a while, going to the Mall wasn’t as much of a draw for me, so I started taking Route 10 downtown to explore what our Core city had to offer. Of course, making my way into adulthood, I spent a lot of time at music venues, such as the Quest Club, First Avenue and The Triple Rock.
As I was beginning to learn the rhythm of the city transit system, I was able to transfer downtown to Uptown and explore the Chain of Lakes.
My first “real” bike store bike purchase was from a Pawn Shop on E Lake Street, where I happen to get my first job. Prior to this, I rode a Target Magna throw-away.
Shorty after, I found myself with a couple beautiful daughters and have been riding with them in our Burley trailer for all kinds of errands and adventures.
I moved away from my South Minneapolis home around 2012 and moved back near where I grew up, in Northeast Minneapolis. I now have the same walk to the very same Route 10 bus as I did when I was a young kid. I felt at home once again, now showing my kids how easy it is to get around without a car.
For the past 6 years, my commute from Northeast Minneapolis to Lyn-Lake is about 6.5 miles each way. I also travel 1.5 miles to my youngest daughter’s daycare to drop her off. A pretty straight forward commute along low volume streets as well as the Cedar Lake Trail and through Loring Park. Quite pleasant and just enough of a workout to keep me relatively active.
The main reason for my choice to use multiple modes of transportation is pretty simple: It adds a variety to our lives that afford us to explore our neighborhood and city in ways that driving alone doesn’t. I am also able to teach my kids how to effectively get around town in ways a lot of kids never heard of. The “mom taxi” is unfortunately too common in our day in age. I love when my little ones ask to go on an adventure — which is code for, lets go ride our bikes!
Random adventures in the Hop household.