Saint Paul's 1922 zoning map (MN Historical Society)

Sunday Summary – February 10, 2019

Winter haters in Minnesota have had much to complain about in the last week with lots of snow, cold temperatures, and lots of events and activities cancelled. Perhaps our writers are hunkered down awaiting warmer weather (or failed to read Amy Gage’s post or still enjoying a post-City of Lakes Loppet high), but it was a pretty light week and here it all is:

Continuing story

Brit Builds an ADU: Infill and Transportation is part 3 of Brit Anbacht’s planning an ADU for their property (Part one is who might build one and why; part two is about architects). This time, Brit asks, “As part of the city’s desire to reduce congestion by encouraging public transit Accessory Dwelling Units are not required to have additional parking space of their own. We are likely to either replace our current two car garage with a one or two spot garage thus either reducing private parking or maintaining the current parking capacity. As such, how will our new tenant get around the city?” And answers the question with a detailed account of the transit connections, bike links, and the possibility of living in their ADU without a car.

Metro Transit 5 Bus

Metro Transit 5 bus


What Can Walkers Learn From Winter Cyclists? asks Amy Gage. In a nutshell, that there is no bad weather, just inappropriate clothing.  But, people on bikes riding in subzero temps know they need good gear and “Winter walking gear may sound expensive — long coat engineered for below-zero wind chills, face mask and hat, various gloves and mittens, walking boots and moisture-wicking socks, Yaktrax and a reflective vest — though it is far cheaper than the cost of car maintenance, when you consider oil changes, tire rotation, insurance premiums and license plate renewal.” There’s also a plug to review the Saint Paul Pedestrian Plan (comments closed Friday, February 8).

St. Paul 2040 Could Learn Something from St. Paul 1922 by Evan Roberts shows us the 1922 zoning map and notes the simplicity,  “Aspects of the map are worth considering for resurrection. Throughout the residential areas of the city, the height limit with no setbacks was 40 feet, essentially allowing 4 stories everywhere. In residential areas for every foot of setback a building could be one foot taller. With a ten foot setback it would be possible to build five stories.”

Saint Paul's 1922 zoning map (MN Historical Society)

Saint Paul’s 1922 zoning map (MN Historical Society)

Paul Jahn uses Google Maps in the Minneapolis Bottineau Neighborhood to find his way around and get to interesting places via Google reviews. In a post from summer 2017 updated for 2019 to help you dream about warm weather, “The Bottineau neighborhood is at the very north end of the 3rd ward. Google Maps does make it a bit easier to navigate around,” and find bars, bikes, and ball fields.

Baby Biking Book Bleg is a request by Adam Miller for childrens’ book recommendations for his small daughter (add your thoughts in the comments to the post)  The other day as I was reading her a book about a truck stop, which she also loves, and thought, gee, maybe I need to get her some books that are less internal combustion powered. I love that she loves these topics, and will continue to encourage her to be excited to ride trains and buses or go past a construction site, but let’s read about riding bikes too.

Streets Me

Amy Gage happily prepared for winter walking

Regular features

National Links: The Curb of the Future is in Cincinnati from Jeff Wood at the Overhead Wire.

Map Monday: Saint Paul What Even Am I Looking At asks Bill Lindeke, “Here’s a map on the wall at the new Treasure Island Center in downtown Saint Paul, which is the old Macy’s Building which was the old Dayton’s, which was designed by famous mall architect and quasi-pedestrian-focused architect Victor Gruen to be a windowless box. Today it has windows in it thanks to a drastic deconstructive remodel courtesy of the Saint Paul Port Authority, which owns the building now.” Commenters seem equally baffled by the map markings and possible significance. You can try your eye:

Weird Port Authority St Paul Map

Weird Port Authority Map

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