Author Archive | Conrad Zbikowski

Reimagining Nicollet Mall for Micro-Mobility

During the NCAA Final Four, Nicollet Mall achieved what the planners had only dreamed of. It was a packed, vibrant hive of pedestrian activation with visitors shooting hoops, dining outside and even riding a Ferris wheel. The festivities ceded the 24-foot-wide bus lanes to pedestrians, and the activities and outdoor dining attracted crowds. Months later, […]

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12 Ideas to Improve Downtown Mobility

I was walking through the skyway near Nicollet Mall on Monday and watching the backed up traffic below. Single occupancy fossil fuel vehicles, car commuters, were “blocking the box” and preventing buses full of other commuters from getting home on time. The flow of pedestrians at every signal cycle was more than the number of […]

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Review: Nice Ride Electric-Assist Bike (2019)

On Monday, July 29, Nice Ride launched its electric-assist bike or “ebike” pilot. The press release gushed about how riders could “supercharge” their rides, and also highlighted Nice Ride’s new “Nice Ride for All” program for low-income riders. The program gives annual memberships to Nice Ride to people on either nutrition assistance (SNAP) or transit […]

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Lime Quietly Raises Prices on Scooter Rentals

Recently, Lime increased its pricing in Minneapolis and St. Paul from $1 plus 15 cents per minute to $1 plus 20 cents per minute. For a typical five-minute ride, this increases the total cost by 14 percent, from $1.75 to $2 even. For a longer ride of 10 minutes, the increase is 20 percent. Rival […]

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Meet a Roundabout: I-494 and U.S. 169

Last Monday, I drove my father to a doctor’s appointment in Edina. We don’t usually travel these ways, but his regular general practitioner was on vacation. At the intersection of Interstate 494 and U.S. 169 are six linked roundabouts surrounding the freeway interchange. The two-lane roundabouts — with dedicated lanes for going either right or […]

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University Ave SE and 4th St SE Restriped in “Protected Bikeway Study”

Within the last two weeks, University Ave SE and 4th St SE, both arterial one-way roads, have been restriped to reduce the lanes of vehicular traffic and to start to create a protected bike lane in each direction on the corresponding roads. The bike lanes as of June 26 are only buffered bike lanes, without […]

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Review: Lime vs. Lyft Scooters in 2019

Lyft, a third scooter competitor, hit the streets of Minneapolis on July 1. Lime and Spin started this season’s operations earlier in the spring, and rival Jump, owned by ride share heavyweight Uber, will likely be joining soon. With the mid-year advent of a third scooter network operator, I tested out Lime and Lyft scooters […]

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Hennepin County to Restripe Park and Portland to Restore Bike Lanes

In an email sent Friday morning, June 21, Hennepin County announced it would be restriping lanes of Park Avenue South (County Road 33) and Portland Avenue South (County Road 35) to restore the buffered bike lanes present before the 35@94 freeway project began. Nicole Salica reported in streets.mn last year on restriping Park and Portland […]

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Review: 2019 Tesla Model 3

Recently, I wrote about the future of mobility and my belief that the future is electric. Last week, I took a test drive of that future, making the pilgrimage to Eden Prairie to try out the latest version of the Tesla Model 3. Before we begin, I was not compensated by Tesla, Toyota, or anybody, […]

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Nice Ride Gives Membership Extensions Following Setbacks

On Monday, June 10, Nice Ride sent an email to members with two statements addressing its recent setbacks with dockless hubs and electric bikes. In compensation for the missed expectations, Nice Ride extended yearly memberships by 45 days. In the first statement, Nice Ride implied that the rollout of its dockless hubs was delayed because […]

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