Tag Archives: history

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 […]

Preserve The Future, Not Just The Past

Because I have a lot of important things to fill my time, I recently tuned in to a meeting of the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission. There was just one item on the agenda: the proposed demolition of a low-slung downtown office building at 17 N Washington Avenue, which would then be replaced by a 27 […]

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National Links: 1980’s Trucking Law that Led to Big Box Stores

very 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. […]

Streetcar Robert Annapolis 1930

Suburb of the Month: West Saint Paul

Much as Golden Valley is the closest suburb to downtown Minneapolis, West Saint Paul is the closest suburb to downtown Saint Paul. Unlike Golden Valley, West Saint Paul has fairly good transit, especially on Robert St. No streetcars ran in West Saint Paul, though three streetcar lines ran from downtown Saint Paul to the city […]

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Suburb of the Month: Golden Valley

Hello, streets.mn readers! My name is John Charles Wilson and I have a history of commenting on this blog. Now I am taking the plunge and writing posts of my own. This post is planned to be the first in a series about public transit in the Twin Cities suburbs, how good or bad it […]

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Will Target Field Station Ever be a Rail Hub?

St. Paul Union Depot is a natural choice as a regional and intercity rail hub for St. Paul as the station is already in use and there’s plenty of room to expand when needed. However, Minneapolis is a different story. Amtrak doesn’t directly serve Minneapolis, but Target Field Station does have the Northstar Line providing […]

Lowry Hill Sidewalk

Walking All the Streets of Southern Lowry Hill

The Lowry Hill neighborhood is named for the “devil’s backbone” ridge that runs through it, approximately on the dividing line between my two walks. Thomas Lowry and his 19th-century peers lived on the north side of the hill, whereas this first walk concentrated on the more grid-like area to the south, largely developed in the […]

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A History of Traffic Management Technology

Earlier I wrote about the history of our Interstate Highway System (Part One and Part Two) and how they were partly a 1930s response to growing urban congestion, as big of a threat to the freedom of mobility as mud and ruts were only a few decades before. However the dream of ending congestion didn’t […]

Dan Patch Rail Train

A Vision for the Dan Patch Corridor

Last year I posted about the potential for regional rail in the Twin Cities and Minnesota, and for this post I’ll be focusing on a route that has been of interest to me for over a decade; the Dan Patch Corridor between Minneapolis and Northfield. Some background on myself: I’ve lived in West Bloomington my […]

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St. Paul By Bike: First Time in Capitol Heights, Mount Airy and Back to the Bluff

Frogtown (Capitol Heights, Mount Airy), Payne-Phalen, East Side (Dayton’s Bluff) 27 Miles July 14, 2018 Capitol Heights There is a small section of Frogtown, immediately north of the Minnesota State Capitol, that has been known as Capitol Heights for more than a century. That was stop one on my ride. Once called Sherburne Hill, it […]