Archive | Planning

Five Reasons to Give to the Max: The Posts You Read to the Max

Happy Give to the Max Day! We’ve already given you a glimpse into what your financial donation means to us at streets.mn — a wholly volunteer-led, volunteer-edited and volunteer-written web site. But, when it comes to it, you’re here because we publish such great content. Think about the posts you’ve read this year. Any of […]

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Open Streets at PennFest

Penn & 66th is the best small business district in Richfield. Why replace it?

Last spring, at a voter forum for Richfield’s west-side Council seat, there were a number of questions about the mid-century commercial development that lines Penn Avenue between the Crosstown and 68th Street. Voters and candidates spoke of “tired” buildings, non-conforming sites, and inadequate parking. These questions about Penn Avenue seem to come up in every […]

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Kitten Reading Internet Comments

We Read Ford Site Comments So You Don’t Have To

When controversy happens….when tempers flare….we read the comments, so you don’t have to. Perhaps you have heard of the Ford Site, in St. Paul? It is no longer being used to make trucks. It is one of the largest, best pieces of land to be developed in the city core right now on either side of […]

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Kitten Reading Internet Comments

We Read the Strib Parking Article’s Comments So You Don’t Have To

When controversy happens….when tempers flare….we read the comments, so you don’t have to. On Sunday, as teased on Twitter by our own @streetsmn account, the Star Tribune posted an article It’s not your imagination — parking is disappearing in Minneapolis. The subhead and picture on the article gave a taste of what was to come, with a […]

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The Ford Site Debate is Also About Equity

About two weeks ago, the Planning Commission finally passed Saint Paul’s plans for the old Ford factory in Highland. The vote was unanimous to support to support the city’s plans, which called for around 4,000 units of housing and plenty of mixed-use, along with a host of other amenities. (Note: there was also an amendment […]

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Real Public Engagement

In a recent post, Jason Brisson highlights the conflict between “top-down” planning, where experts provide the direction for a project, and “bottom-up” planning, where community members drive (ha, ha, drive, get it?) the project. I do not think this is an either/or issue where technocrats tell a community what it needs versus a community, no […]

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Should City Planners Let People Kill Themselves?

This question is implied or encroached upon in nearly every modern planning conversation, but is not as often discussed directly. I think we should acknowledge it and talk about it openly. I will discuss this question in the context of the model city planners refer to as “bottom-up” city planning, give an example and then briefly […]

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History Theater’s “The Highwaymen” Hit on Some Crucially Unexplored Themes

I am finally putting up my “review” of The Highwaymen, a play produced by the History Theater that centered on the construction of I-94 through Saint Paul’s African-American Rondo neighborhood. Thanks to the generosity of a friend, I got to attend the play during its closing week. I liked it but, since I’m so interested […]

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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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Are District Councils Really Just Homeowner’s Associations?

Recently my neighborhood had its yearly district council election here in Highland Park. I couldn’t help but notice as the newly elected grid representatives received the applause of their neighbors, who they were: five white home-owning men, three out of the five sporting white hair. Out of the seven seats in contention that night, only one seat […]

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