Walk the Talk: Nicollet Redesign, Boost the Bus

Editor’s note: Walk the Talk is Streets.mn’s carefully curated, highly partisan collection of both serious and fun-loving events, community meetings and opportunities for engagement that we think will interest our readers. Email your ideas to Hawken Habig, one of our daily editors, at hawkenhabig@gmail.com.

Vision Zero Action Plan Public Comment — Thursday, December 1, 6 p.m.

Minneapolis Vision Zero Action Plan 2023-2025

Minneapolis has released a new draft of the Vision Zero Action Plan for 2023-2025 and is seeking public comment. Vision Zero is an initiative that aims to eliminate traffic deaths, and Minneapolis’ draft plan includes strategies such as street conversions, bump-outs and more medians. You can submit your feedback online through this form through December 11 or attend a virtual open house on Thursday, December 1 at 6 p.m, which you can learn more about here.

2022 Transportation Summit: What is Mobility Justice? — Wednesday, November 30, 8-11 a.m.

Several Twin Cities transportation organizations are partnering to bring you the 2022 Transportation Summit, focusing on mobility justice and equity in transportation. The event will include a breakfast provided by Breaking Bread Catering, followed by several local speakers and a keynote address by Los Angeles-based activist and filmmaker Yolanda Davis-Overstreet. It will begin at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, November 30 at The Hennepin Center in downtown Minneapolis. The summit is free, but registration is required: do so and learn more here.

Move Minnesota Boost the Bus Events — November 21, 29; and December 1

Boost the Bus: For Better, Faster Transit.

Move Minnesota will host several events over the next few weeks as part of their Boost the Bus campaign advocating against Metro Transit’s continued service cuts. The series will kick off at Move Minnesota’s office at 2446 University Ave. W. in St. Paul with Poster Making & Advocate Prep on Monday, November 21, at 6:30 p.m., and will continue with a phone bank on Tuesday, November 29, at 6 p.m. The main rally will take place outside Metro Transit’s Heywood Garage on Thursday, December 1. Learn more about the events on Move Minnesota’s website, and remember to RSVP if you plan on attending any one of them!

New Nicollet Redevelopment Survey — Through Saturday, December 31

The old Kmart that intersects Nicollet Avenue. Photo courtesy of the City of Minneapolis.

The infamous Nicollet Avenue Kmart site may finally meet its long-awaited demise as Minneapolis seeks to redevelop the property and reintegrate Nicollet back into the street grid. The city assumed control of the site in 2020, but redevelopment was put off in light of that year’s many disruptions to business as usual. Now, the project is entering its first phase of development and the city is soliciting the community’s feedback through an online survey. Development will continue through next year as the city releases initial drafts for the site’s design and layout.

Photo at top courtesy of the City of Minneapolis


8 thoughts on “Walk the Talk: Nicollet Redesign, Boost the Bus

  1. Trademark

    As much as I support our Bus service advocating against Metro Transit’s service cuts are pointless unless the phone banking are calling people letting them know MT is hiring at $26 an hour. Or raising money to increase the signing bonus from $5,000.

    Metro Transit has the budget and the desire to increase service but doesn’t have the drivers for it. All advocating against them will do is put the blame in the wrong place, and waste people’s time.

    Reply
    1. Rand

      I have a buddy that works at Metro Transit in the service development department and they have been fighting tooth and nail to keep as much service as they can running. They just don’t have enough drivers. Hopefully the new contract will help them restore service to pre pandemic levels. The people that work there hate cutting service just as much as we hate seeing it go

      Reply
    2. Keith Morris

      They could also free up drivers by cutting some suburban express routes that only get a handful of riders at all. That would free up a decent number of drivers and buses for better service on major routes. Urban routes are always the ones that get reduced the most. Us city folk have to suffer so that a few suburbanites can have a bus take them directly to work quickly while we’re stuck with buses stopping every block or two.

      Reply
      1. Brian

        Express buses have already been cut in a big way since the start of the pandemic. Route 250 used to have buses every five to ten minutes during the peak times. It wasn’t a big deal if you missed a bus, or if a bus was full. You just waited five to ten minutes and jumped on the next bus. Now, buses come about every 30 minutes. If you miss the bus you are pretty well screwed.

        I only go to the office about five days out of a month now. With the bus schedule changes it is next to impossible not to have to wait 10 to 15 minutes to transfer to the 7 downtown to get to my office at the far end of the north loop. I gave up on the bus and just drive even though the bus is cheaper. I like to save money and the environment too, but not at the cost of an hour a day of my time.

        Reply
  2. Aaron IsaacsAaron Isaacs

    I resigned from the Move Minnesota Board because of the staff’s wrongheaded decision to pick fights with Metro Transit instead of working to support them. The previous comments are right on the mark. Metro Transit is doing everything it can to hire drivers, but low unemployment prevents that. Holding a demonstration is pointless and childish.

    Reply
    1. Sheldon Gitis

      Isn’t the Met Council/Metro Transit paying Move MN for the “pointless and childish” behavior? Doesn’t Move MN have a contract with the Met Council/Metro Transit to lobby for more money for Metro Transit?

      Reply
    2. Trademark

      Like the argument could be made that they aren’t doing enough when they were paying $21 an hour and $1,000 signing bonus. But $26 an hour and $5k signing bonus is a substantial jump, and if I held a license for long enough I would instantly apply for that job.

      Reply
  3. Sheldon Gitis

    Kind of a heavy lift advocating for more money for drivers to put more big empty buses on city streets, especially when you’re spending nearly $3B on an LRT line connecting a highway hellhole in Hopkins to a billionaire’s baseball stadium.

    Maybe Minneapolis, St. Paul, and the Metro Council should think more about how to provide better transit service and less about how to keep getting boatloads of money to provide more of the same LRT/BRT transit reduction.

    Reply

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