Archive | Planning

Planning Plazas for Safe Protest

Since the 2016 elections, I have followed the news chronicling the latest demonstrations and protests on a wide range of issues — including immigration, inequality, and women’s rights — and felt inspired by the people who are no longer content with waiting for someone else to make change happen. At the same time, I am […]

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Minneapolis 2040 Is More Than Fourplexes and High-Rises

Contrary to most of the commentary, Minneapolis 2040, this decade’s comprehensive plan re-do, is about a lot more than allowing fourplexes in all of Minneapolis and skyscraper apartments in your neighborhood. It starts with 14 basic goals adopted by the City Council to provide direction to staff in the development of the draft Comprehensive Plan. The 97 policies in the Comprehensive Plan flow from those goals. Under […]

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Please Color Outside the Lines

Recently I realized my complaints about three new urban improvements boiled down to the same thing: Careful thought and design work seemed to stop at the edge of the project. Something just outside the lines had screwed it up. My first and longest-standing complaint like this concerned the lack of a bus shelter on University […]

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A “Pro-Family” Comprehensive Plan

One of the common criticisms you hear about the Minneapolis 2040 draft comprehensive plan, if you go to enough public meetings, is that it’s anti-family. People say if you want to support families, you’ve got to restrict the vast majority of city land for single-family homes. This criticism doesn’t hold water unless the only kind […]

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Comprehensive Plans: Where Do You Want To Live?

Many of our suburban cities are updating comprehensive plans. These set the course for what our communities will look like over the next 20 to 30 years and are quite important. These impact safety, community desirability (and so home values, city tax revenue and ability to maintain infrastructure), quality of life, physical and mental health […]

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Five Keys to Rochester’s North Broadway Debate

A lot has happened during Rochester’s North Broadway discussions, but I feel that much of the consternation is not about the project itself. Rather, people in Rochester are debating about which direction the city is heading. There is a group of people, both elected and not, who are clinging to the last strands of what […]

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Deep North Podcast – The Upper Harbor Terminal Development: An Overview

The Mississippi River in North Minneapolis and what will become of the Upper Harbor Terminal Subscribe on iTunes>>                 With more than 10,000 lakes and more shoreline than Florida, Hawaii, and California combined, it’s difficult to travel anywhere in Minnesota without crossing a lake, waterfall or river. The name […]

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The Future: Minneapolis 2040

At a community meeting for a street reconstruction last year, a young mom made a passionate argument: it would be a generation, she said, before the street was reconstructed again. This was our only chance to create a neighborhood street where she could safely push a stroller, or walk and bike with her kids. It […]

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What Is The Minneapolis Comprehensive Plan?

You may have heard recent chatter about the Minneapolis Comprehensive Plan (“Comp Plan”). For those new to the Comp Plan, here’s a quick primer on what it is, what is happening, and why it matters: What is the Comp Plan? Every ten years, the City of Minneapolis develops and releases a Comp Plan. This is […]

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Let’s Really Talk About Privilege in Transportation

A recent Streets.mn piece attempts to make the case that Minneapolis policies, including but not limited to the draft Comprehensive Plan, are part of a broader war on cars, driven by the “privilege” of people who cannot or choose not to drive. I feel like I have a responsibility to respond, because I’ve worked for transportation […]

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