NiceRide Booth at the E-Bike Challenge

Sunday Summary – April 7, 2019

The Final Four has taken over downtown Minneapolis and you could write a post about how well the city managed its latest crowd scene. Before riding the ferris wheel on Nicollet Mall and other Final Four activities, I hope you attended the Writers Workshop in Saint Paul; we’ll report on that more next week.

Top stories last week

Continuing the information about Nice Ride ebikes, #eBikeThoughts: I rode a NiceRide eBike! by James Kohls follows up the recent post about Nice Ride’s plans for adding ebikes to their fleet with information about the bikes themselves – both techy stuff and how the ride feels.

Threat Modeling and Climate Change has Anton Schieffer bringing threat modeling down to earth, “When you look both ways to cross a street, you’re doing a simplistic version of what’s called “threat modeling,” and it’s “something we do thousands of times per day, whether we think about it or not. We are experts in assessing potential immediate risks to ourselves. We choose to walk on populated, well-lit streets rather than in dark alleys. We put on seat belts when we take a trip in a car. We avoid eating spoiled food that might make us sick.” Take that understanding of assessing risk and consider how cities and local entities can assess their activities in light of threat to the climate (and, eventually, to ourselves).

Last week, Conrad Zbikowski wrote about the possibilities of a Minneapolis-Duluth rail service comparing costs with other ways to get from here to there.  This week, he follows up with a request for information with Reader Survey: What Would You Pay for Minneapolis-Duluth Rail Service?

NiceRide at the E-Bike Challenge

NiceRide at the E-Bike Challenge

April foolishness

Not too late to appreciate our writers’ pranks even if you are not fooled with Saint Paul Floats New Libertarian Paving Policy where Bill Lindeke imagines, “The city’s PILOT [Pavement in Lieu of Taxes] program allows individual drivers to use self-assessed fees to fund their own individual patches of pavement for personal and collective driving needs. Drivers interested in improving road quality in Saint Paul simply vote using a city-sponsored app in order to direct individual funds to fund specific stretches of road, selecting pavement as specific as individual lanes they choose to use. With just the click of a button, even drivers from surrounding suburbs who are just passing through Saint Paul will be able to donate to fill individual potholes, or offer to fund a percentage of the roads on the route they drive every day.”

Or, Sean Hayford Oleary’s report on a state level initiative, MnDOT to Combat Dangerous Scourge of ‘Distracted Walking’ at Mall of America.  Obviously, the Mall is the perfect place to start addressing distracted walking so, “The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) has announced an exciting new effort in its campaign to fight the dangerous epidemic of distracted walking, by targeting one of the metro area’s most dangerous areas for distracted pedestrians: the Mall of America.” Next year, perhaps MnDOT will also tackle “walk rage” at the Mall.

April Fools - Margaret Anderson Kelliher in front of Shake Shack

Commissioner Margaret Anderson Kelliher announced the campaign in front of Shake Shack. The photographer was required to pull over prior to taking the photo for safety.

Regular features

Walk: Walking All the Streets of Central Lind-Bohanon with Max Hailperin.

Look: Chart of the Day: Energy Intensity of Transportation Modes about which Bill Lindeke says, “Looking at CO2 emissions is one thing, but total energy use is an even broader way to think about how our society gets around. That’s why I think energy charts are fascinating, and you should too,” and Map Monday: Met Council’s Proposed 2020 Census Tracts and Blocks which is multiple maps plus a detailed look at the proposed tracts and how they’ve changed since the last Census in 2010. Eric Anondson.

Hopkins 2020 Proposed

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