Archive | Placemaking

Window filled with red hearts that have reasons why people love the city

Valentine to Your City

The idea of writing a love letter to your city isn’t new. I hadn’t thought of it in a while, but then I was in Wausau, Wisconsin, last weekend, where downtown storefront windows were filled with red hearts proclaiming reasons why people love Wausau.     At the state’s oldest bookstore, I donated a buck […]

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If I Ran the World: West 7th Street

If I ran the world, West 7th Street would be great. In addition to cool shops and bars, a long history, and excellent transit, West 7th Street would have a series of linear parks. Parks with benches. Parks with tables. Parks with trees. Anyone could walk or hop a street car from one cool shop […]

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Three Things the Twin Cities Would Do if it Really Wanted an Amazon HQ

By now you’ve all seen the news about the amazing Amazon HQ. 50,000 high-paying jobs landing in some North American city is basically the mega-fantasy of every economic-development-person slash tax-base-loving-politician in the country. And the Twin Cities is among them. Cue the Amazon takes: Governor Dayton, cautiously optimistic; Chris Coleman, running for governor, releasing a […]

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Bemidji: A Town After my Heart

I realize that New Ulm is the urbanist’s dream and I truly do enjoy New Ulm (Herman the German – great!). However, Bemidji is giving New Ulm a run for its money. I adore Bemidji. Work travel used to take me there once or twice a year and now vacations do. Take note, urbanists! Over […]

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On Skyways And Busways

Whether the Minneapolis skyway system contributes good things to the livability of downtown has been well discussed for a while on this site, but the conversation has been brought to a wider audience recently with local businessman Eric Dayton coming out aggressively against them. Dayton has also become a vocal critic of the state of […]

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How Saint Paul’s 8 80 Vitality Fellowship Spread a Vision of Equity, Prosperity & Fun

It’s a brilliantly blue winter day, and a happy crowd in downtown Saint Paul dispels the myth that Minnesotans hibernate from November to May. Smiles erupt as people sip hot chocolate, build a snowman, cluster in threes and fours for animated conversation, and gobble food truck burritos at café tables. A young woman hands out […]

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