Category: Governance

Assessing the Legacy of Minneapolis’s Progressive Urbanist City Council

The 2021 general election is over. All across the country it was a deeply divisive and angry campaign and the results reflected that dismal process. In Minneapolis, it was no different. It was a bad time to be earnest about the future. The cynics won in a rout. Among the losses were four councilmembers, Cam […]

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Fry with his daughter Frida and wife Sarah

At Open Streets, we asked candidates for Minneapolis Mayor about transit and public safety

With arguably the most decisive Minneapolis election in our lifetime rapidly approaching on Nov. 2, I went to Open Streets Minnehaha this past weekend on a mission to ask mayoral candidates questions submitted by streets.mn contributors.  I got the three main contenders: incumbent Jacob Frey, former state representative Kate Knuth, and organizer Sheila Nezhad. I […]

National Links: Sprawling Across America

Every day at The Overhead Wire, we collect news about cities and send the links to our email list. At the end of the week we take some of the most popular stories and post them to Greater Greater Washington, a group blog similar to streets.mn that focuses on urban issues in the D.C. region. […]

Learning from the Land Down Under

This post is co-authored with Nathanael Lauster, Author of The Death and Life of the Single-Family House: Lessons from Vancouver on Building a Livable City. The authors met when Lauster lived in Minneapolis from 2005-6. Lauster is now an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of British Columbia. This post is cross-posted from https://homefreesociology.com/. Exciting […]

Lies in City Planning

In April, Minneapois Public Works released the results of a survey showing strong community support for reopening 38th & Chicago to vehicle traffic. Just one problem: it wasn’t true.

21 North Washington Avenue, Minneapolis.

No, We Should Not Abolish the HPC. But It Could Look Different.

An essay posted January 15, 2021 on streets.mn entitled “Preserve The Future, Not Just The Past” is a fairly typical critique of heritage preservation and the role of heritage preservation commissions (HPCs) in American cities. The article points to the frequently absurd minutia and short-sightedness of HPC meetings and staff reports, but does not fully […]

An old Richfield bus

Suburbs of the Month: Excelsior, Deephaven, Shorewood and Tonka Bay

It has been a long time since I’ve posted an installment of my “Suburb of the Month” series on transit in the Twin Cities suburbs, mostly due to my limited ability to take pictures at this time. However, I have a picture relevant to the Excelsior area, and even though it wasn’t my planned next […]

Why Minneapolis needs a Land Value Tax

This image shows a mostly undeveloped parking lot, occupying a full block of prime real estate in the heart of downtown Minneapolis. Why does this lot remain underdeveloped? The owner of the land could increase their income drastically if they developed the land to its fullest potential. Additionally, the city as a whole would gain […]

transit riders

Five Facets of Recovery from COVID-19

“It [the pandemic] is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next. We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, our avarice, our data banks and dead ideas, our dead rivers and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready […]