Archive | Placemaking

3 Ideas to Create Better Summer Cities

Summer’s recent resurgence has bummed me out since I’m not exactly a fan of hot weather, but the bright side is that it means this post (which I procrastinated on writing for about two months) can be published and still be somewhat timely even as the first signs of autumn appear. As global warming continues […]

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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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The Ten Blocks

I drive along Dowling, a busy avenue in my North Minneapolis neighborhood. As I travel the ten blocks I know like my own hands, a quote swirls through my brain. Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you’ll look back and realize they were the big things. Small doings are in plain sight, […]

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The Basketball Hoop

One morning in 2009, Husband pulled on his grubby work clothes and set out for the garage. He welded when he had the time, and that day, he needed to create a piece for the school’s art gala. Hours later, I glanced out the kitchen window. He had an audience. The two boys from down […]

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Goodbye Lime Bikes, We Never Cared

Lime isn’t bringing its bikes back to Saint Paul in 2019 and I think that’s fine. And if I died while riding my bike the cops in Saint Paul would be nonplussed. I tried riding a Lime last year. Not the scooter; those were fine, if a little boring. But the green bikes were heavy, […]

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Final Four on Nicollet Mall Shows What Downtown Minneapolis Could Be

On semifinal Saturday, as the game between Virginia and Auburn was about to begin, I followed the streaming crowds backward to Nicollet Mall, where the other half of the fan base was enjoying our new pedestrian mall, now vehicle-free! Traffic was relatively light, and visitors were taking to the sidewalk pretty well. One Final Four […]

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Scooter on a Bridge

Sharing Streets with Scooters

One hot day last August I set out to walk a marathon around the Twin Cities, starting with a jaunt over to St Paul for a streets.mn board meeting, a tour of the sewer covers of Rondo (they’re amazing!), and a nice brunch before meandering back to Minneapolis to wander around more. Midday, I headed […]

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The Park Board’s Vision for Gateway Park

Recently, I met with Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board District 4 Commissioner Jono Cowgill across the street from Gateway Park to chat about the current state and future of the park. Welcome to Gateway Park 🦖 Gateway Park is a plaza located at the intersection of Hennepin Ave and S 1st St and is bordered […]

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Walking Crookston

8am. I just finished walking an hour and a half from the Grand Forks Amtrak station. It’s a Saturday morning at the end of September in 2017, and the night before, I spent 6 hours on the Empire Builder traveling from the Twin Cities. After crossing the bridge to briefly visit East Grand Forks, and […]

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Groveland Recreation Center Provides Physical Amenities, Lacks Social Participation

[Part of the Saint Paul Field Guide to Public Spaces, put together by a Geography class at Macalester College in fall 2018. See introduction here.] By Henry Nieberg Located in the heart of the Macalester-Groveland neighborhood of St. Paul, the Groveland Recreation Center offers educational programs, family events, athletic facilities and rental space for parties, meetings and […]

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