Author Archive | Mike Sonn

The Need for #HousingnotBillboards in Saint Paul

Saint Paul is not lacking for one or two story commercial buildings topped with billboards. This is frustrating on many levels – they are designed for drivers, not pedestrians; there are no design standards; and they are often ignored in “neighborhood character” discussions. The first two of those frustrations, driver-focused design and lack of design standards, are […]

Continue Reading 6

More Livable Streets at Snelling Midway

I want express my excitement surrounding the site plan for the Snelling-Midway Redevelopment. The density, return of the street grid, and mixed-use will be an asset to St. Paul for years to come. However, I need to express some concerns about the right-of-way widths at the proposed development. As shown above, the proposed rights-of-way for internal […]

Continue Reading

Snarking Violations

Snow can expose things about our car-dominated landscape that wouldn’t normally be so obvious. Much like a sneckdown, a “snarking violation” is when one can clearly observe that a vehicle hasn’t been moved and has violated posted parking ordinances. Over the course of Monday night, the Twin Cities received their first snow storm. I took the opportunity, […]

Continue Reading
Parking meter in Uptown

Parking Meters Will Work for Grand Avenue

When my wife and I moved back to the Midwest after nearly a decade on the West Coast, we chose Grand Avenue. We chose it for a number of reasons, but first and foremost was the walkability. We didn’t own a car during our eight years in San Francisco, and we became accustomed to the […]

Continue Reading

Cleveland Avenue Shows St. Paul’s Need for Parking Creativity

I wanted to piggy-back off of Bill’s great piece on Lowertown’s perceived parking problem, where he notes that people walked nearly a mile from their parking spot on Energy Park Drive to Midway Stadium and were completely okay with that but parking a couple blocks away from CHS Field and walking through a vibrant downtown is somehow asking too […]

Continue Reading