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What can the Jordan neighborhood get from 26th Avenue upgrades?

Wed, 2014-10-01 14:03
Jeff Skrenes

The contents of this post are not the position of the Jordan Area Community Council, and are my personal musing on the topic.

We are nearing the end of the beginning for the 26th Avenue Greenway/Bikeway. As plans will soon be finalized, neighborhoods and interest groups are making their final pushes for amenities or tweaks to the project that benefit their goals. Overall, this lobbying has produced good results The "opportunity points" at the river, Farview Park, Nellie Stone Johnson School, and Theo Wirth Parkway are all great additions to the corridor. And yet they all fall outside the boundaries of my neighborhood.

So I'm going to be unabashedly selfish here. If the bikeway is getting potential improvements over the previous plan, is there a way for the Jordan neighborhood to benefit from that? (Aside from the indirect benefit of having a better bike corridor overall, that is.)

Well, yes and no.

First off, 26th Avenue North in Jordan is entirely a residential sector. There's no businesses (unless you count the shack Steve Meldahl uses as his slumlord headquarters), there are no parks, or schools. It's all houses, apartments, and vacant lots. There isn't a large assembly of contiguous vacant land to use as an expansion of a bike path. And there is neither the money nor the communal nor political will to acquire properties for demolition (or partial taking of lots) to expand the bikeway.

So it seems there isn't an easy, direct request that folks in Jordan can make. There is, however, an improvment or two that we could ask for in conjunction with this project, and those lie along the 25th and 27th Avenues.

Twenty-Fifth Avenue North is, quite simply, a hodgepodge of conflicting one-way segments. If St. Paul was designed, as our former governor once said, by drunken Irishmen, then 25th Avenue was put together by Scandinavians at their passive-aggressive worst while on a bad acid trip. None of it makes any sense unless viewed through the lens of someone trying to keep people out of the neighborhood while not wanting to seem like they're keeping people out of the neighborhood, oh and they may have been hallucinating.

There is a block of one-way eastbound traffic, followed by a block of one-way westbound, followed by a block (or two, depending on how you count it; no, really) of two-way traffic, followed by several blocks of a one-way westbound street, which intersects at Penn Avenue with another one-way westbound street.

I can tell you right now that if 26th Avenue is closed to construction for an extended period of time, people will begin to use 25th as their substitute for getting in and out of Jordan. It won't matter what the signs say, that street will function as a two-way street for much of its length. If the MPD wants to give me and other drivers a bunch of tickets, they could just park someone at 25th and James all day long.

The problem is that when there inevitably won't be police presence, there will be some idiot driver who is actually following the posted rules of 25th Avenue North, Lord only knows why, and he or she will wind up in an accident with the common-sense motorist who was just driving along the way people should. In all seriousness though, forcing motorists off of 26th during construction will make 25th Avenue significantly less safe if the route isn't changed to a consistent one- or two-way street.

And it better be a two-way street, even if parking has to be limited, because the other need we have in Jordan is going to cost a lot more money to fix. And that's traffic diverters.

Traffic diverters are barriers that force vehicles to turn either right or left instead of passing directly through an intersection. Jordan has such barriers at 27th and Irving, 29th and James, and 30th and Knox. At the very least, I think the 27th and Irving barrier should be removed. Similarly to 25th Avenue North, construction on 26th will divert traffic to 27th as well. Even after completion, more drivers may choose streets besides the bikeway.

On college campuses, pathways across green common areas often develop naturally based on how students choose to walk from one place to another. These are called desirability paths, and I believe good neighborhood design recognizes how people choose to move through a community and create thoroughfares that mach such movements. Good design on and around 26th Avenue North should recognize this dynamic and use it to improve our community.

North by Northside North by Northside

NEIGHBORHOOD NOTES | October-November 2014 Standish-Ericsson community calendar

Tue, 2014-09-30 14:13
Standish-Ericsson Neighborhood Association

October

7 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
8 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Nokomis Healthy Seniors: Who We Are and What We Can Do for You,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
9 Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
10 “Identity” Art Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
13 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 7:00–8:00 p.m.
SENA Board meeting, 1830 E. 42nd St., 7:00 p.m., handicapped accessible
17 Second Annual SENA Chili Fest, Sibley Park, 5:00–7:30 p.m.
18 Friends of the Library Used Book Sale, Roosevelt Library (4026 28th Ave. S.), 10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
21 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
23 Senior blood pressure checks, Standish Green (2210 E. 40th St.), 12:00 noon
Caregiver Support Group, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 1:00 p.m.
25 Last Saturday for Midtown Farmers Market (2225 E. Lake St.), 8:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
30 Lunch and a movie, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church, 11:15 a.m.

November

4 General election. Get out and vote!
5 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
10 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
12 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Recycling: New Updates,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
SENA Annual Meeting, Lake Hiawatha Park Bldg. (2701 E. 44th St.), 6:30–8:30 p.m.
13 Bingo, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 11:00 a.m.
Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 2:00–4:00 p.m.
18 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
19 Prospective Family–8th Grade Information Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
25 Minnehaha Falls of Fun, Minnehaha Park, 1:00–4:00 p.m.
31 Halloween party and trick or treating, Sibley Park, 4:30–6:00 p.m.

October

7 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
8 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Nokomis Healthy Seniors: Who We Are and What We Can Do for You,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
9 Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
10 “Identity” Art Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
13 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 7:00–8:00 p.m.
SENA Board meeting, 1830 E. 42nd St., 7:00 p.m., handicapped accessible
17 Second Annual SENA Chili Fest, Sibley Park, 5:00–7:30 p.m.
18 Friends of the Library Used Book Sale, Roosevelt Library (4026 28th Ave. S.), 10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
21 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
23 Senior blood pressure checks, Standish Green (2210 E. 40th St.), 12:00 noon
Caregiver Support Group, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 1:00 p.m.
25 Last Saturday for Midtown Farmers Market (2225 E. Lake St.), 8:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
30 Lunch and a movie, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church, 11:15 a.m.

November

4 General election. Get out and vote!
5 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
10 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
12 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Recycling: New Updates,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
SENA Annual Meeting, Lake Hiawatha Park Bldg. (2701 E. 44th St.), 6:30–8:30 p.m.
13 Bingo, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 11:00 a.m.
Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 2:00–4:00 p.m.
18 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
19 Prospective Family–8th Grade Information Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
25 Minnehaha Falls of Fun, Minnehaha Park, 1:00–4:00 p.m.
31 Halloween party and trick or treating, Sibley Park, 4:30–6:00 p.m.

© 2014 Standish-Ericsson Neighborhood Association

    NEIGHBORHOOD NOTES | October-November 2014 Standish-Ericsson community calendar

    Tue, 2014-09-30 14:13
    Standish-Ericsson Neighborhood Association

    October

    7 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
    8 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Nokomis Healthy Seniors: Who We Are and What We Can Do for You,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
    9 Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
    10 “Identity” Art Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
    13 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 7:00–8:00 p.m.
    SENA Board meeting, 1830 E. 42nd St., 7:00 p.m., handicapped accessible
    17 Second Annual SENA Chili Fest, Sibley Park, 5:00–7:30 p.m.
    18 Friends of the Library Used Book Sale, Roosevelt Library (4026 28th Ave. S.), 10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
    21 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
    23 Senior blood pressure checks, Standish Green (2210 E. 40th St.), 12:00 noon
    Caregiver Support Group, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 1:00 p.m.
    25 Last Saturday for Midtown Farmers Market (2225 E. Lake St.), 8:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
    30 Lunch and a movie, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church, 11:15 a.m.

    November

    4 General election. Get out and vote!
    5 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
    10 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
    12 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Recycling: New Updates,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
    SENA Annual Meeting, Lake Hiawatha Park Bldg. (2701 E. 44th St.), 6:30–8:30 p.m.
    13 Bingo, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 11:00 a.m.
    Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 2:00–4:00 p.m.
    18 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
    19 Prospective Family–8th Grade Information Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
    25 Minnehaha Falls of Fun, Minnehaha Park, 1:00–4:00 p.m.
    31 Halloween party and trick or treating, Sibley Park, 4:30–6:00 p.m.

    October

    7 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
    8 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Nokomis Healthy Seniors: Who We Are and What We Can Do for You,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
    9 Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
    10 “Identity” Art Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
    13 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 7:00–8:00 p.m.
    SENA Board meeting, 1830 E. 42nd St., 7:00 p.m., handicapped accessible
    17 Second Annual SENA Chili Fest, Sibley Park, 5:00–7:30 p.m.
    18 Friends of the Library Used Book Sale, Roosevelt Library (4026 28th Ave. S.), 10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
    21 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
    23 Senior blood pressure checks, Standish Green (2210 E. 40th St.), 12:00 noon
    Caregiver Support Group, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 1:00 p.m.
    25 Last Saturday for Midtown Farmers Market (2225 E. Lake St.), 8:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
    30 Lunch and a movie, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church, 11:15 a.m.

    November

    4 General election. Get out and vote!
    5 Senior congregate dining, Sibley Park (19th Ave. S. and E. 40th St.), 11:30 a.m.
    10 Dementia Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living (3733 23rd Ave. S.), 2:00–4:00 p.m.
    12 Nokomis Healthy Seniors Health Program: “Recycling: New Updates,” Nokomis Square Cooperative (5015 35th Ave. S.), 1:30 p.m.
    SENA Annual Meeting, Lake Hiawatha Park Bldg. (2701 E. 44th St.), 6:30–8:30 p.m.
    13 Bingo, Nokomis Healthy Seniors, Bethel Lutheran Church (4120 17th Ave. S.), 11:00 a.m.
    Community knitting group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 2:00–4:00 p.m.
    18 Parkinson’s Support Group, Minnehaha Senior Living, 3:30–4:15 p.m.
    19 Prospective Family–8th Grade Information Night, Roosevelt High School (4029 28th Ave. S.).
    25 Minnehaha Falls of Fun, Minnehaha Park, 1:00–4:00 p.m.
    31 Halloween party and trick or treating, Sibley Park, 4:30–6:00 p.m.

    © 2014 Standish-Ericsson Neighborhood Association

      Hmong youth engaged in the North Minneapolis Greenway

      Mon, 2014-09-29 16:46
      David Kang Community Voices

      "Greenway yog ab tsi?", or "What is a greenway?" in the Hmong language, is a question that has been asked more than 100 times of North Minneapolis community members in and near Hmong International Academy by middle school students of color in the YMCA Beacons Minneapolis program at Hmong International Academy (HIA) – a Minneapolis Public School in the Jordan Neighborhood of North Minneapolis.

      This is a Community Voices submission and is moderated but not edited. The opinions expressed by Community Voices contributors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TC Daily Planet.

      From April to June of 2014, Hmong American Partnership, in collaboration with Hana Media & Development, provided an after-school media arts, service-learning project called In Focus: N. MPLS Greenway (or simply In Focus) for a group of mostly Hmong middle school students at the HIA, to assist the City of Minneapolis share information about the potential North Minneapolis Greenway and collect feedback from the community, especially from Asian Americans in the area who had not been a part of the city's first round of engagement regarding the possible greenway.

      The participants in the In Focus project learned about video production skills, the City of Minneapolis' greenway concepts, and community outreach techniques. Through the guidance of program facilitators, the youth helped to create Hmong and English Public Service Announcement (PSA) videos, and conducted surveys of HIA friends, families, and faculty, as well as other community members in the area. One Hmong student in the project remarked, "It's great that we are make videos to help share this info with other Hmong in the community."

      Through the PSAs and conversations about the project, community members learned that a greenway is a park-like trail that people can use for biking, walking, transportation, and recreation, and that the city is currently considering Humboldt Avenue North, from the Victory Neighborhood to the Near North or Harrison Neighborhood of North Minneapolis, as a possible route for the North Minneapolis Greenway. The greenway is intended to create a new health, transportation and recreation amenity for families in north Minneapolis. It could also create space for additional amenities, such as community gardens and public art.

      A total of 13 community groups where granted funds, in part by Blue Cross, Blue Shield of MN, and organized by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis. The In Focus group collected 121 surveys, from mostly Hmong community members living on or near the potential greenway, to add to the 1163 total surveys collected by the other outreach projects, such as engagement efforts led by Redeemer Center for Life and the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition, with each group focusing on a particular geographic area or community.

      All together, the city collected a total of 2,040 surveys completed online, at events, and through door-knocking efforts. Overall, 76% of respondents support the greenway idea and 12.6% oppose it. Among north Minneapolis residents, 70.2% of respondents support the greenway idea and 16.8% oppose it. Of those living on the proposed route, 60% support the greenway on their block.

      Some of the feedback from community members was for the city to consider the safety, cleanliness, and access to parking along the greenway route. Also, community members suggested ideas to add “food trucks at some locations” and “lots of plants, flowers” to increase the attraction to the greenway and livability in the area.

      The In Focus project’s lead agencies, Hmong American Partnership and Hana Media & Development, deliberately chose to partner with HIA, and the YMCA Beacons program at the school, for many specific reasons and benefits to the project and outreach efforts.

      First, HIA is located on Humboldt Avenue North in the Jordan neighborhood, which is on the proposed greenway route. The organizations felt that this type of development would create a significant impact for the school’s students, families, faculty and staff, and that they should have the opportunity to provide their input to the city.

      Second, the majority of the students and staff at HIA are from the Asian community in North Minneapolis, which had not been included in previous engagement efforts, and had yet to add their voices to the conversation and decisions-making process. Since In Focus participants would be mostly from the Hmong community, this provided for ideal project contributors to help produce Hmong language information to share with the community, and to conduct culturally/linguistically-appropriate outreach and surveying of community members.

      Lastly, since the majority of In Focus’ participants were at-risk students from low-income families, the project was a good fit for them to learn media arts skills through a service-learning initiative, to help the youth develop leadership capacity and healthy cultural identity, while providing mentorships with caring adults from the community.

      In Focus’ Media arts instructor, Kue Xiong, helped the students learn new video production skills, and collectively contribute to the production of the PSAs. Mr. Xiong expressed, “The youth’s engagement exceeded my expectations...It was a humbling and rewarding experience.”

      Today, the City of Minneapolis continues its exploration of the North Minneapolis Greenway, and it is planning the next stepping in the engagement and outreach process. For more information about the potential greenway, please contact Sarah Stewart, Senior Public Health Specialist in the City of Minneapolis’ Health & Family Support Department, at 612-673-3987, or Sarah [dot] Stewart [at] minneapolismn [dot] gov.

      Links to the PSAs:

      "Greenway yog ab tsi?", or "What is a greenway?" in the Hmong language, is a question that has been asked more than 100 times of North Minneapolis community members in and near Hmong International Academy by middle school students of color in the YMCA Beacons Minneapolis program at Hmong International Academy (HIA) – a Minneapolis Public School in the Jordan Neighborhood of North Minneapolis.

      This is a Community Voices submission and is moderated but not edited. The opinions expressed by Community Voices contributors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TC Daily Planet.

      From April to June of 2014, Hmong American Partnership, in collaboration with Hana Media & Development, provided an after-school media arts, service-learning project called In Focus: N. MPLS Greenway (or simply In Focus) for a group of mostly Hmong middle school students at the HIA, to assist the City of Minneapolis share information about the potential North Minneapolis Greenway and collect feedback from the community, especially from Asian Americans in the area who had not been a part of the city's first round of engagement regarding the possible greenway.

      The participants in the In Focus project learned about video production skills, the City of Minneapolis' greenway concepts, and community outreach techniques. Through the guidance of program facilitators, the youth helped to create Hmong and English Public Service Announcement (PSA) videos, and conducted surveys of HIA friends, families, and faculty, as well as other community members in the area. One Hmong student in the project remarked, "It's great that we are make videos to help share this info with other Hmong in the community."

      Through the PSAs and conversations about the project, community members learned that a greenway is a park-like trail that people can use for biking, walking, transportation, and recreation, and that the city is currently considering Humboldt Avenue North, from the Victory Neighborhood to the Near North or Harrison Neighborhood of North Minneapolis, as a possible route for the North Minneapolis Greenway. The greenway is intended to create a new health, transportation and recreation amenity for families in north Minneapolis. It could also create space for additional amenities, such as community gardens and public art.

      A total of 13 community groups where granted funds, in part by Blue Cross, Blue Shield of MN, and organized by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis. The In Focus group collected 121 surveys, from mostly Hmong community members living on or near the potential greenway, to add to the 1163 total surveys collected by the other outreach projects, such as engagement efforts led by Redeemer Center for Life and the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition, with each group focusing on a particular geographic area or community.

      All together, the city collected a total of 2,040 surveys completed online, at events, and through door-knocking efforts. Overall, 76% of respondents support the greenway idea and 12.6% oppose it. Among north Minneapolis residents, 70.2% of respondents support the greenway idea and 16.8% oppose it. Of those living on the proposed route, 60% support the greenway on their block.

      Some of the feedback from community members was for the city to consider the safety, cleanliness, and access to parking along the greenway route. Also, community members suggested ideas to add “food trucks at some locations” and “lots of plants, flowers” to increase the attraction to the greenway and livability in the area.

      The In Focus project’s lead agencies, Hmong American Partnership and Hana Media & Development, deliberately chose to partner with HIA, and the YMCA Beacons program at the school, for many specific reasons and benefits to the project and outreach efforts.

      First, HIA is located on Humboldt Avenue North in the Jordan neighborhood, which is on the proposed greenway route. The organizations felt that this type of development would create a significant impact for the school’s students, families, faculty and staff, and that they should have the opportunity to provide their input to the city.

      Second, the majority of the students and staff at HIA are from the Asian community in North Minneapolis, which had not been included in previous engagement efforts, and had yet to add their voices to the conversation and decisions-making process. Since In Focus participants would be mostly from the Hmong community, this provided for ideal project contributors to help produce Hmong language information to share with the community, and to conduct culturally/linguistically-appropriate outreach and surveying of community members.

      Lastly, since the majority of In Focus’ participants were at-risk students from low-income families, the project was a good fit for them to learn media arts skills through a service-learning initiative, to help the youth develop leadership capacity and healthy cultural identity, while providing mentorships with caring adults from the community.

      In Focus’ Media arts instructor, Kue Xiong, helped the students learn new video production skills, and collectively contribute to the production of the PSAs. Mr. Xiong expressed, “The youth’s engagement exceeded my expectations...It was a humbling and rewarding experience.”

      Today, the City of Minneapolis continues its exploration of the North Minneapolis Greenway, and it is planning the next stepping in the engagement and outreach process. For more information about the potential greenway, please contact Sarah Stewart, Senior Public Health Specialist in the City of Minneapolis’ Health & Family Support Department, at 612-673-3987, or Sarah [dot] Stewart [at] minneapolismn [dot] gov.

      Links to the PSAs:

      © 2014 David Kang

        Hmong Youth Engaged in the North Minneapolis Greenway

        Mon, 2014-09-29 16:46
        David Kang Community Voices

        "Greenway yog ab tsi?", or "What is a greenway?" in the Hmong language, is a question that has been asked more than 100 times of North Minneapolis community members in and near Hmong International Academy by middle school students of color in the YMCA Beacons Minneapolis program at Hmong International Academy (HIA) – a Minneapolis Public School in the Jordan Neighborhood of North Minneapolis.

        This is a Community Voices submission and is moderated but not edited. The opinions expressed by Community Voices contributors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TC Daily Planet.

        From April to June of 2014, Hmong American Partnership, in collaboration with Hana Media & Development, provided an after-school media arts, service-learning project called In Focus: N. MPLS Greenway (or simply In Focus) for a group of mostly Hmong middle school students at the HIA, to assist the City of Minneapolis share information about the potential North Minneapolis Greenway and collect feedback from the community, especially from Asian Americans in the area who had not been a part of the city's first round of engagement regarding the possible greenway.

        The participants in the In Focus project learned about video production skills, the City of Minneapolis' greenway concepts, and community outreach techniques. Through the guidance of program facilitators, the youth helped to create Hmong and English Public Service Announcement (PSA) videos, and conducted surveys of HIA friends, families, and faculty, as well as other community members in the area. One Hmong student in the project remarked, "It's great that we are make videos to help share this info with other Hmong in the community."

        Through the PSAs and conversations about the project, community members learned that a greenway is a park-like trail that people can use for biking, walking, transportation, and recreation, and that the city is currently considering Humboldt Avenue North, from the Victory Neighborhood to the Near North or Harrison Neighborhood of North Minneapolis, as a possible route for the North Minneapolis Greenway. The greenway is intended to create a new health, transportation and recreation amenity for families in north Minneapolis. It could also create space for additional amenities, such as community gardens and public art.

        A total of 13 community groups where granted funds, in part by Blue Cross, Blue Shield of MN, and organized by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis. The In Focus group collected 121 surveys, from mostly Hmong community members living on or near the potential greenway, to add to the 1163 total surveys collected by the other outreach projects, such as engagement efforts led by Redeemer Center for Life and the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition, with each group focusing on a particular geographic area or community.

        All together, the city collected a total of 2,040 surveys completed online, at events, and through door-knocking efforts. Overall, 76% of respondents support the greenway idea and 12.6% oppose it. Among north Minneapolis residents, 70.2% of respondents support the greenway idea and 16.8% oppose it. Of those living on the proposed route, 60% support the greenway on their block.

        Some of the feedback from community members was for the city to consider the safety, cleanliness, and access to parking along the greenway route. Also, community members suggested ideas to add “food trucks at some locations” and “lots of plants, flowers” to increase the attraction to the greenway and livability in the area.

        The In Focus project’s lead agencies, Hmong American Partnership and Hana Media & Development, deliberately chose to partner with HIA, and the YMCA Beacons program at the school, for many specific reasons and benefits to the project and outreach efforts.

        First, HIA is located on Humboldt Avenue North in the Jordan neighborhood, which is on the proposed greenway route. The organizations felt that this type of development would create a significant impact for the school’s students, families, faculty and staff, and that they should have the opportunity to provide their input to the city.

        Second, the majority of the students and staff at HIA are from the Asian community in North Minneapolis, which had not been included in previous engagement efforts, and had yet to add their voices to the conversation and decisions-making process. Since In Focus participants would be mostly from the Hmong community, this provided for ideal project contributors to help produce Hmong language information to share with the community, and to conduct culturally/linguistically-appropriate outreach and surveying of community members.

        Lastly, since the majority of In Focus’ participants were at-risk students from low-income families, the project was a good fit for them to learn media arts skills through a service-learning initiative, to help the youth develop leadership capacity and healthy cultural identity, while providing mentorships with caring adults from the community.

        In Focus’ Media arts instructor, Kue Xiong, helped the students learn new video production skills, and collectively contribute to the production of the PSAs. Mr. Xiong expressed, “The youth’s engagement exceeded my expectations...It was a humbling and rewarding experience.”

        Today, the City of Minneapolis continues its exploration of the North Minneapolis Greenway, and it is planning the next stepping in the engagement and outreach process. For more information about the potential greenway, please contact Sarah Stewart, Senior Public Health Specialist in the City of Minneapolis’ Health & Family Support Department, at 612-673-3987, or Sarah [dot] Stewart [at] minneapolismn [dot] gov.

        Links to the PSAs:

        • Hmong Version: www.youtube.com/watch?v=-U3VEi7N2Rk

        • English Version: www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3geCGvvYPI

        • City’s Greenway Info:

        http://www.minneapolismn.gov/health/living/northminneapolisgreenway

         

        "Greenway yog ab tsi?", or "What is a greenway?" in the Hmong language, is a question that has been asked more than 100 times of North Minneapolis community members in and near Hmong International Academy by middle school students of color in the YMCA Beacons Minneapolis program at Hmong International Academy (HIA) – a Minneapolis Public School in the Jordan Neighborhood of North Minneapolis.

        This is a Community Voices submission and is moderated but not edited. The opinions expressed by Community Voices contributors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TC Daily Planet.

        From April to June of 2014, Hmong American Partnership, in collaboration with Hana Media & Development, provided an after-school media arts, service-learning project called In Focus: N. MPLS Greenway (or simply In Focus) for a group of mostly Hmong middle school students at the HIA, to assist the City of Minneapolis share information about the potential North Minneapolis Greenway and collect feedback from the community, especially from Asian Americans in the area who had not been a part of the city's first round of engagement regarding the possible greenway.

        The participants in the In Focus project learned about video production skills, the City of Minneapolis' greenway concepts, and community outreach techniques. Through the guidance of program facilitators, the youth helped to create Hmong and English Public Service Announcement (PSA) videos, and conducted surveys of HIA friends, families, and faculty, as well as other community members in the area. One Hmong student in the project remarked, "It's great that we are make videos to help share this info with other Hmong in the community."

        Through the PSAs and conversations about the project, community members learned that a greenway is a park-like trail that people can use for biking, walking, transportation, and recreation, and that the city is currently considering Humboldt Avenue North, from the Victory Neighborhood to the Near North or Harrison Neighborhood of North Minneapolis, as a possible route for the North Minneapolis Greenway. The greenway is intended to create a new health, transportation and recreation amenity for families in north Minneapolis. It could also create space for additional amenities, such as community gardens and public art.

        A total of 13 community groups where granted funds, in part by Blue Cross, Blue Shield of MN, and organized by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis. The In Focus group collected 121 surveys, from mostly Hmong community members living on or near the potential greenway, to add to the 1163 total surveys collected by the other outreach projects, such as engagement efforts led by Redeemer Center for Life and the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition, with each group focusing on a particular geographic area or community.

        All together, the city collected a total of 2,040 surveys completed online, at events, and through door-knocking efforts. Overall, 76% of respondents support the greenway idea and 12.6% oppose it. Among north Minneapolis residents, 70.2% of respondents support the greenway idea and 16.8% oppose it. Of those living on the proposed route, 60% support the greenway on their block.

        Some of the feedback from community members was for the city to consider the safety, cleanliness, and access to parking along the greenway route. Also, community members suggested ideas to add “food trucks at some locations” and “lots of plants, flowers” to increase the attraction to the greenway and livability in the area.

        The In Focus project’s lead agencies, Hmong American Partnership and Hana Media & Development, deliberately chose to partner with HIA, and the YMCA Beacons program at the school, for many specific reasons and benefits to the project and outreach efforts.

        First, HIA is located on Humboldt Avenue North in the Jordan neighborhood, which is on the proposed greenway route. The organizations felt that this type of development would create a significant impact for the school’s students, families, faculty and staff, and that they should have the opportunity to provide their input to the city.

        Second, the majority of the students and staff at HIA are from the Asian community in North Minneapolis, which had not been included in previous engagement efforts, and had yet to add their voices to the conversation and decisions-making process. Since In Focus participants would be mostly from the Hmong community, this provided for ideal project contributors to help produce Hmong language information to share with the community, and to conduct culturally/linguistically-appropriate outreach and surveying of community members.

        Lastly, since the majority of In Focus’ participants were at-risk students from low-income families, the project was a good fit for them to learn media arts skills through a service-learning initiative, to help the youth develop leadership capacity and healthy cultural identity, while providing mentorships with caring adults from the community.

        In Focus’ Media arts instructor, Kue Xiong, helped the students learn new video production skills, and collectively contribute to the production of the PSAs. Mr. Xiong expressed, “The youth’s engagement exceeded my expectations...It was a humbling and rewarding experience.”

        Today, the City of Minneapolis continues its exploration of the North Minneapolis Greenway, and it is planning the next stepping in the engagement and outreach process. For more information about the potential greenway, please contact Sarah Stewart, Senior Public Health Specialist in the City of Minneapolis’ Health & Family Support Department, at 612-673-3987, or Sarah [dot] Stewart [at] minneapolismn [dot] gov.

        Links to the PSAs:

        • Hmong Version: www.youtube.com/watch?v=-U3VEi7N2Rk

        • English Version: www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3geCGvvYPI

        • City’s Greenway Info:

        http://www.minneapolismn.gov/health/living/northminneapolisgreenway

         

        © 2014 David Kang

        Herb talk at Milly's Peace Garden

        Sun, 2014-09-28 15:21
        Corcoran News

        Local herbalist Cynthia Thomas (right) giving a most interesting talk on July 26 at Milly's Peace Garden, one of Corcoran's community gardens, on the herbal medicines growing in her garden plot. Pictured with her are Pamela Morgan, Corcoran resident, and Alice Paczkowsk (left). Cynthia demonstrated how to identify and use the plants growing in her plot as well as some uses for common weeds.

        Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
        Click here for current edition.

        Local herbalist Cynthia Thomas (right) giving a most interesting talk on July 26 at Milly's Peace Garden, one of Corcoran's community gardens, on the herbal medicines growing in her garden plot. Pictured with her are Pamela Morgan, Corcoran resident, and Alice Paczkowsk (left). Cynthia demonstrated how to identify and use the plants growing in her plot as well as some uses for common weeds.

        Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
        Click here for current edition.

        © 2014 Corcoran News

          Herb talk at Milly's Peace Garden

          Sun, 2014-09-28 15:21
          Corcoran News

          Local herbalist Cynthia Thomas (right) giving a most interesting talk on July 26 at Milly's Peace Garden, one of Corcoran's community gardens, on the herbal medicines growing in her garden plot. Pictured with her are Pamela Morgan, Corcoran resident, and Alice Paczkowsk (left). Cynthia demonstrated how to identify and use the plants growing in her plot as well as some uses for common weeds.

          Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
          Click here for current edition.

          Local herbalist Cynthia Thomas (right) giving a most interesting talk on July 26 at Milly's Peace Garden, one of Corcoran's community gardens, on the herbal medicines growing in her garden plot. Pictured with her are Pamela Morgan, Corcoran resident, and Alice Paczkowsk (left). Cynthia demonstrated how to identify and use the plants growing in her plot as well as some uses for common weeds.

          Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
          Click here for current edition.

          © 2014 Corcoran News

          CURA housing forum

          Sun, 2014-09-28 15:19
          Corcoran News

          Reyna Flores, 18 year Corcoran resident, and CNO Lead Organizer Ross Joy were invited to present at a Housing Forum on August 4th at the University of Minnesota, hosted by the Center for Urban & Regional Affairs (CURA). CNO has been collaborating with City of Minneapolis Department of Regulatory Services through open data policies to address housing issues affecting apartment buildings in neighborhood.

          Rental housing is critical to the inclusivity and diversity of Corcoran Neighborhood. Communities of color, including 82% of both Latino and black people, reside in the neighborhood’s 638 rental housing units. 42.3% of Corcoran’s occupied housing is rental, rather than owner-occupied.

          Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
          Click here for current edition.

          Reyna Flores, 18 year Corcoran resident, and CNO Lead Organizer Ross Joy were invited to present at a Housing Forum on August 4th at the University of Minnesota, hosted by the Center for Urban & Regional Affairs (CURA). CNO has been collaborating with City of Minneapolis Department of Regulatory Services through open data policies to address housing issues affecting apartment buildings in neighborhood.

          Rental housing is critical to the inclusivity and diversity of Corcoran Neighborhood. Communities of color, including 82% of both Latino and black people, reside in the neighborhood’s 638 rental housing units. 42.3% of Corcoran’s occupied housing is rental, rather than owner-occupied.

          Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
          Click here for current edition.

          © 2014 Corcoran News

            CURA housing forum

            Sun, 2014-09-28 15:19
            Corcoran News

            Reyna Flores, 18 year Corcoran resident, and CNO Lead Organizer Ross Joy were invited to present at a Housing Forum on August 4th at the University of Minnesota, hosted by the Center for Urban & Regional Affairs (CURA). CNO has been collaborating with City of Minneapolis Department of Regulatory Services through open data policies to address housing issues affecting apartment buildings in neighborhood.

            Rental housing is critical to the inclusivity and diversity of Corcoran Neighborhood. Communities of color, including 82% of both Latino and black people, reside in the neighborhood’s 638 rental housing units. 42.3% of Corcoran’s occupied housing is rental, rather than owner-occupied.

            Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
            Click here for current edition.

            Reyna Flores, 18 year Corcoran resident, and CNO Lead Organizer Ross Joy were invited to present at a Housing Forum on August 4th at the University of Minnesota, hosted by the Center for Urban & Regional Affairs (CURA). CNO has been collaborating with City of Minneapolis Department of Regulatory Services through open data policies to address housing issues affecting apartment buildings in neighborhood.

            Rental housing is critical to the inclusivity and diversity of Corcoran Neighborhood. Communities of color, including 82% of both Latino and black people, reside in the neighborhood’s 638 rental housing units. 42.3% of Corcoran’s occupied housing is rental, rather than owner-occupied.

            Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
            Click here for current edition.

            © 2014 Corcoran News

            Reach out to elder neighbors

            Sun, 2014-09-28 15:16
            Corcoran News

            On a recent afternoon, I walked through the Corcoran neighborhood to the Bloomington Avenue post office. As I passed each home, I wondered if there was an elder inside, sitting all alone, feeling lonely and isolated.

            Census figures show that one-third of elderly persons in Minneapolis lives alone; as many as two-thirds of women 85-89 are alone. And while living alone doesn’t automatically indicate loneliness, isolation in the elderly is usually not by choice. Aging often comes with isolating factors such as declining eyesight, limited mobility and poor balance. Elders who at a younger age had been outgoing and sociable may no longer have the ability to engage with neighbors or friends – even if they want to.

            Isolation and loneliness carries risks to elders, too. They have a greater chance of falling, suffering from depression, stress and malnutrition, and developing heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and decreased immunities.

            You can brighten the lives of elder neighbors and enrich your own by getting to know them. They contribute to the rich tapestry of our neighborhood. They know the community’s history, block by block, and pass its story down to younger generations. They keep a guardian’s eye on our children and property, enhancing our sense of security. And they enjoy an unhurried conversation, forging enduring friendships that enhance our community’s livability.

            If you know of an elder who needs companionship, you can also refer them to Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly at 612-721-6215, 1845 East Lake Street. Volunteer elder visitors are always welcome and needed, too.

            LuAnne Speeter is the Interim Executive Director of Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly.

            Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
            Click here for current edition.

            On a recent afternoon, I walked through the Corcoran neighborhood to the Bloomington Avenue post office. As I passed each home, I wondered if there was an elder inside, sitting all alone, feeling lonely and isolated.

            Census figures show that one-third of elderly persons in Minneapolis lives alone; as many as two-thirds of women 85-89 are alone. And while living alone doesn’t automatically indicate loneliness, isolation in the elderly is usually not by choice. Aging often comes with isolating factors such as declining eyesight, limited mobility and poor balance. Elders who at a younger age had been outgoing and sociable may no longer have the ability to engage with neighbors or friends – even if they want to.

            Isolation and loneliness carries risks to elders, too. They have a greater chance of falling, suffering from depression, stress and malnutrition, and developing heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and decreased immunities.

            You can brighten the lives of elder neighbors and enrich your own by getting to know them. They contribute to the rich tapestry of our neighborhood. They know the community’s history, block by block, and pass its story down to younger generations. They keep a guardian’s eye on our children and property, enhancing our sense of security. And they enjoy an unhurried conversation, forging enduring friendships that enhance our community’s livability.

            If you know of an elder who needs companionship, you can also refer them to Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly at 612-721-6215, 1845 East Lake Street. Volunteer elder visitors are always welcome and needed, too.

            LuAnne Speeter is the Interim Executive Director of Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly.

            Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
            Click here for current edition.

            © 2014 Corcoran News

              Reach out to elder neighbors

              Sun, 2014-09-28 15:16
              Corcoran News

              On a recent afternoon, I walked through the Corcoran neighborhood to the Bloomington Avenue post office. As I passed each home, I wondered if there was an elder inside, sitting all alone, feeling lonely and isolated.

              Census figures show that one-third of elderly persons in Minneapolis lives alone; as many as two-thirds of women 85-89 are alone. And while living alone doesn’t automatically indicate loneliness, isolation in the elderly is usually not by choice. Aging often comes with isolating factors such as declining eyesight, limited mobility and poor balance. Elders who at a younger age had been outgoing and sociable may no longer have the ability to engage with neighbors or friends – even if they want to.

              Isolation and loneliness carries risks to elders, too. They have a greater chance of falling, suffering from depression, stress and malnutrition, and developing heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and decreased immunities.

              You can brighten the lives of elder neighbors and enrich your own by getting to know them. They contribute to the rich tapestry of our neighborhood. They know the community’s history, block by block, and pass its story down to younger generations. They keep a guardian’s eye on our children and property, enhancing our sense of security. And they enjoy an unhurried conversation, forging enduring friendships that enhance our community’s livability.

              If you know of an elder who needs companionship, you can also refer them to Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly at 612-721-6215, 1845 East Lake Street. Volunteer elder visitors are always welcome and needed, too.

              LuAnne Speeter is the Interim Executive Director of Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly.

              Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
              Click here for current edition.

              On a recent afternoon, I walked through the Corcoran neighborhood to the Bloomington Avenue post office. As I passed each home, I wondered if there was an elder inside, sitting all alone, feeling lonely and isolated.

              Census figures show that one-third of elderly persons in Minneapolis lives alone; as many as two-thirds of women 85-89 are alone. And while living alone doesn’t automatically indicate loneliness, isolation in the elderly is usually not by choice. Aging often comes with isolating factors such as declining eyesight, limited mobility and poor balance. Elders who at a younger age had been outgoing and sociable may no longer have the ability to engage with neighbors or friends – even if they want to.

              Isolation and loneliness carries risks to elders, too. They have a greater chance of falling, suffering from depression, stress and malnutrition, and developing heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and decreased immunities.

              You can brighten the lives of elder neighbors and enrich your own by getting to know them. They contribute to the rich tapestry of our neighborhood. They know the community’s history, block by block, and pass its story down to younger generations. They keep a guardian’s eye on our children and property, enhancing our sense of security. And they enjoy an unhurried conversation, forging enduring friendships that enhance our community’s livability.

              If you know of an elder who needs companionship, you can also refer them to Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly at 612-721-6215, 1845 East Lake Street. Volunteer elder visitors are always welcome and needed, too.

              LuAnne Speeter is the Interim Executive Director of Little Brothers - Friends of the Elderly.

              Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
              Click here for current edition.

              © 2014 Corcoran News

              Feedback on newspaper

              Sun, 2014-09-28 15:13
              Oscar Del Sébastien Corcoran News

              Last month CNO put out a request from our neighbors to send in suggested titles that would potentially replace the current newspaper name. We received a few suggestions. Below please find the list of suggestions.

              To vote on any of these please go to corcoranneighborhood.org. We hope to hear back from the community.

              • The Chirp
              • The Corcoran Community Newsletter
              • Corcoran Chronicle
              • The Corcoran Citizen
              • Keep the title as is

              Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
              Click here for current edition.

              Last month CNO put out a request from our neighbors to send in suggested titles that would potentially replace the current newspaper name. We received a few suggestions. Below please find the list of suggestions.

              To vote on any of these please go to corcoranneighborhood.org. We hope to hear back from the community.

              • The Chirp
              • The Corcoran Community Newsletter
              • Corcoran Chronicle
              • The Corcoran Citizen
              • Keep the title as is

              Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
              Click here for current edition.

              © 2014 Corcoran News

                Feedback on newspaper

                Sun, 2014-09-28 15:13
                Oscar Del Sébastien Corcoran News

                Last month CNO put out a request from our neighbors to send in suggested titles that would potentially replace the current newspaper name. We received a few suggestions. Below please find the list of suggestions.

                To vote on any of these please go to corcoranneighborhood.org. We hope to hear back from the community.

                • The Chirp
                • The Corcoran Community Newsletter
                • Corcoran Chronicle
                • The Corcoran Citizen
                • Keep the title as is

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                Last month CNO put out a request from our neighbors to send in suggested titles that would potentially replace the current newspaper name. We received a few suggestions. Below please find the list of suggestions.

                To vote on any of these please go to corcoranneighborhood.org. We hope to hear back from the community.

                • The Chirp
                • The Corcoran Community Newsletter
                • Corcoran Chronicle
                • The Corcoran Citizen
                • Keep the title as is

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                © 2014 Corcoran News

                Neighbors helping neighborhoods

                Sun, 2014-09-28 15:11
                Corcoran News

                Last month I had the opportunity to learn a lot about a wonderful group of people who are making our neighborhood a better place to live – right now – and for generations to come. The name of the group is Corcoran GROWS. Their mission is to “unleash the potential of its neighbors, through a variety of efforts that empower our community to work together toward greater self-reliance.” They are part of the Transition Town Movement, a grassroots idea “to build community resilience in the face of such challenges as peak oil, climate change and the economic crisis.”

                My dad and I had to look up some of the words in the last sentence to get a better idea of what Corcoran GROWS is all about. The next step for me was to meet with Joe Hesla, one of the people who helped start the group about 5 years ago. I asked him if it is exciting to be part of Corcoran GROWS. Naturally, he said that it is very exciting because “we get neighbors together to make new friends, do projects together. Learn from each other to be more sustainable, grow food and do it your self projects.”

                Some of those projects from this year included holding “a building day to build stands for rain barrels so the barrels work better.” They also built compost structures for neighbors and had a raspberry-sharing day. A few weeks back they held their third neighborhood Garden Tour. Russ Henry toured gardens with neighbors and gave lots of ideas about how to make their gardens more sustainable. Mr. Hesla went on to mention, “Corcoran GROWS has participated in two Info Fairs where they gave demos about worm composting, rocket stoves, & gardening. Corcoran Grows hosted two community sings. Knowing people in your neighborhood is the best way to keep your community sustainable.”

                By the time you are reading this article you may have the chance to attend one of workshops on canning. The two remaining sessions are on canning cucumbers (September 6th) and tomatoes (September 13th). The workshops are free, but people need to bring their own vegetables and canning supplies. To sign up you should contact Anne Holzinger (anneholzinger [at] hotmail [dot] com).

                Mr. Hesla told me that in the winter Corcoran GROWS show movies that feature people from all over the world working together to make their own communities sustainable. You should visit the website (corcorangrows.org) to learn more about their ongoing projects and upcoming events. For instance, Milly’s Peace Garden “a community garden at 2017 East 38th Street. All community members are invited to visit and to apply to participate in gardening activities.”

                My last question to Mr. Hesla was to find out his favorite part of Corcoran GROWS. “Getting to meet the awesome people in the Corcoran neighborhood, sometimes people he would not otherwise meet, and doing projects to bring people together.”

                Frances Copenhaver is the Corcoran News Youth Reporter.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                Last month I had the opportunity to learn a lot about a wonderful group of people who are making our neighborhood a better place to live – right now – and for generations to come. The name of the group is Corcoran GROWS. Their mission is to “unleash the potential of its neighbors, through a variety of efforts that empower our community to work together toward greater self-reliance.” They are part of the Transition Town Movement, a grassroots idea “to build community resilience in the face of such challenges as peak oil, climate change and the economic crisis.”

                My dad and I had to look up some of the words in the last sentence to get a better idea of what Corcoran GROWS is all about. The next step for me was to meet with Joe Hesla, one of the people who helped start the group about 5 years ago. I asked him if it is exciting to be part of Corcoran GROWS. Naturally, he said that it is very exciting because “we get neighbors together to make new friends, do projects together. Learn from each other to be more sustainable, grow food and do it your self projects.”

                Some of those projects from this year included holding “a building day to build stands for rain barrels so the barrels work better.” They also built compost structures for neighbors and had a raspberry-sharing day. A few weeks back they held their third neighborhood Garden Tour. Russ Henry toured gardens with neighbors and gave lots of ideas about how to make their gardens more sustainable. Mr. Hesla went on to mention, “Corcoran GROWS has participated in two Info Fairs where they gave demos about worm composting, rocket stoves, & gardening. Corcoran Grows hosted two community sings. Knowing people in your neighborhood is the best way to keep your community sustainable.”

                By the time you are reading this article you may have the chance to attend one of workshops on canning. The two remaining sessions are on canning cucumbers (September 6th) and tomatoes (September 13th). The workshops are free, but people need to bring their own vegetables and canning supplies. To sign up you should contact Anne Holzinger (anneholzinger [at] hotmail [dot] com).

                Mr. Hesla told me that in the winter Corcoran GROWS show movies that feature people from all over the world working together to make their own communities sustainable. You should visit the website (corcorangrows.org) to learn more about their ongoing projects and upcoming events. For instance, Milly’s Peace Garden “a community garden at 2017 East 38th Street. All community members are invited to visit and to apply to participate in gardening activities.”

                My last question to Mr. Hesla was to find out his favorite part of Corcoran GROWS. “Getting to meet the awesome people in the Corcoran neighborhood, sometimes people he would not otherwise meet, and doing projects to bring people together.”

                Frances Copenhaver is the Corcoran News Youth Reporter.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                © 2014 Corcoran News

                Career Fair & Community Expo on Sept. 23

                Sun, 2014-09-28 15:09
                Corcoran News

                Minneapolis Adult Education | Minneapolis Public Schools

                Minneapolis Adult Education will host a career and community resource expo from 12-5 p.m. on Tuesday, September 23. The event will be held at the South Campus Adult Education Center located at 2225 East Lake Street. Admission is free and all community members and job seekers are welcome to attend.

                This event will feature hiring exhibitors who will be collecting résumés and conducting or scheduling job interviews on-site. If you are seeking employment, dress professionally and bring several copies of your résumé. Industries showcased will include construction, retail, customer service and other entry level positions from a variety of industries. Area businesses and community services will also provide additional informational resources. Translators and interpreters will be onsite.

                Minneapolis Adult Education is a part of Minneapolis Public School’s Community Education Program. Adult Education provides free classes for adults needing literacy skills for work and life. Subject areas include English Language Learning, GED Preparation, College & Career Readiness and Career Pathways. Morning and evening classes are available in north and south Minneapolis. Please visit South Campus on Sept. 25 between 12-5 p.m. or call 612-668-3800 for more information about classes. Additional information can also be found at abe.mpls.k12.mn.us.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                Minneapolis Adult Education | Minneapolis Public Schools

                Minneapolis Adult Education will host a career and community resource expo from 12-5 p.m. on Tuesday, September 23. The event will be held at the South Campus Adult Education Center located at 2225 East Lake Street. Admission is free and all community members and job seekers are welcome to attend.

                This event will feature hiring exhibitors who will be collecting résumés and conducting or scheduling job interviews on-site. If you are seeking employment, dress professionally and bring several copies of your résumé. Industries showcased will include construction, retail, customer service and other entry level positions from a variety of industries. Area businesses and community services will also provide additional informational resources. Translators and interpreters will be onsite.

                Minneapolis Adult Education is a part of Minneapolis Public School’s Community Education Program. Adult Education provides free classes for adults needing literacy skills for work and life. Subject areas include English Language Learning, GED Preparation, College & Career Readiness and Career Pathways. Morning and evening classes are available in north and south Minneapolis. Please visit South Campus on Sept. 25 between 12-5 p.m. or call 612-668-3800 for more information about classes. Additional information can also be found at abe.mpls.k12.mn.us.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                © 2014 Corcoran News

                Corcoran News offers paid opportunity to sell sponsorships

                Sun, 2014-09-28 15:06
                Corcoran News

                CNO is seeking a highly motivated individual to sell advertising / sponsorships that will support and sustain the Corcoran News. Candidates should have strong communication skills and enjoy networking with local businesses and organizations in our area. This is a contract position paid on a commission basis around revenue goals set by the CNO board. All work can occur on your schedule. To apply, please send a short e-mail outlining your experience and qualifications, along with your resume, to hiring [at] corcoranneighborhood [dot] org.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                CNO is seeking a highly motivated individual to sell advertising / sponsorships that will support and sustain the Corcoran News. Candidates should have strong communication skills and enjoy networking with local businesses and organizations in our area. This is a contract position paid on a commission basis around revenue goals set by the CNO board. All work can occur on your schedule. To apply, please send a short e-mail outlining your experience and qualifications, along with your resume, to hiring [at] corcoranneighborhood [dot] org.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                © 2014 Corcoran News

                Corcoran CleanSweep is back!

                Sun, 2014-09-28 14:50
                Corcoran News

                Volunteer to haul away alley junk with neighbors on Sept. 20

                CNO’s CleanSweep event helps residents dispose of non-hazardous junk that cannot be reused, sold, or given away. Residents may leave materials at their alley on the evening of Friday, September 19, marked “for CleanSweep.” Volunteers will then collect and haul items to the Southside Transfer Station on the morning of Saturday, September 20.

                VOLUNTEER NEEDED: Have a great time helping neighbors, scavenging for “treasures,” and meeting new people. We start at 7:45 a.m. with a brief breakfast meeting at CNO (3451 Cedar Ave S), and end with a hearty lunch back at CNO. Please wear closed-toed shoes, long sleeves, and pants instead of shorts. Bring a water container if you can. We’ll provide gloves and plenty of water. Please contact Ross at CNO if you’re able to help: ross [at] corcoranneighborhood [dot] org or 612-724-7457.

                LUNCH DONATIONS NEEDED: Support CNO and Clean Sweep by helping feed our hard-working volunteers. We will serve lunch at the CNO office around Noon on Sept. 20. We need some lunch entrees, beverages, and snack items. Please contact Ross at CNO if you’re able to help: ross [at] corcoranneighborhood [dot] org or 612-724-7457.

                LEAVING ITEMS FOR CLEAN SWEEP. If you plan to leave items for CleanSweep, please come out and volunteer for an hour or two. If you’re doing a major remodeling project, please haul your own materials by reserving a free Transfer Station voucher, free for Minneapolis residents – call (612) 673-2917.

                YES – CleanSweep WILL collect: scrap pieces of drywall, plaster, shingles, wood with all nails removed; scrap pieces of concrete, asphalt, brick, metal; and tires.

                NO – CleanSweep will NOT collect appliances or furniture; yard waste; because the City collects these items during regular and seasonal collections.

                NO – CleanSweep will NOT collect Electronics (television, radio, computer, printer, etc.); or Hazardous items (adhesives, fuels, motor oil, paint, batteries, light bulbs, etc.). Bring to a Hennepin County drop-off center – call 612-348-3777 to learn more.

                OTHER OPTIONS FOR UNWANTED ITEMS:

                Savers at 2124 East Lake accepts usable household goods and clothing.

                twincitiesfreemarket.org is a free way to donate and find unwanted items.

                craigslist.org is an effective way to sell or give away unwanted items.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                Volunteer to haul away alley junk with neighbors on Sept. 20

                CNO’s CleanSweep event helps residents dispose of non-hazardous junk that cannot be reused, sold, or given away. Residents may leave materials at their alley on the evening of Friday, September 19, marked “for CleanSweep.” Volunteers will then collect and haul items to the Southside Transfer Station on the morning of Saturday, September 20.

                VOLUNTEER NEEDED: Have a great time helping neighbors, scavenging for “treasures,” and meeting new people. We start at 7:45 a.m. with a brief breakfast meeting at CNO (3451 Cedar Ave S), and end with a hearty lunch back at CNO. Please wear closed-toed shoes, long sleeves, and pants instead of shorts. Bring a water container if you can. We’ll provide gloves and plenty of water. Please contact Ross at CNO if you’re able to help: ross [at] corcoranneighborhood [dot] org or 612-724-7457.

                LUNCH DONATIONS NEEDED: Support CNO and Clean Sweep by helping feed our hard-working volunteers. We will serve lunch at the CNO office around Noon on Sept. 20. We need some lunch entrees, beverages, and snack items. Please contact Ross at CNO if you’re able to help: ross [at] corcoranneighborhood [dot] org or 612-724-7457.

                LEAVING ITEMS FOR CLEAN SWEEP. If you plan to leave items for CleanSweep, please come out and volunteer for an hour or two. If you’re doing a major remodeling project, please haul your own materials by reserving a free Transfer Station voucher, free for Minneapolis residents – call (612) 673-2917.

                YES – CleanSweep WILL collect: scrap pieces of drywall, plaster, shingles, wood with all nails removed; scrap pieces of concrete, asphalt, brick, metal; and tires.

                NO – CleanSweep will NOT collect appliances or furniture; yard waste; because the City collects these items during regular and seasonal collections.

                NO – CleanSweep will NOT collect Electronics (television, radio, computer, printer, etc.); or Hazardous items (adhesives, fuels, motor oil, paint, batteries, light bulbs, etc.). Bring to a Hennepin County drop-off center – call 612-348-3777 to learn more.

                OTHER OPTIONS FOR UNWANTED ITEMS:

                Savers at 2124 East Lake accepts usable household goods and clothing.

                twincitiesfreemarket.org is a free way to donate and find unwanted items.

                craigslist.org is an effective way to sell or give away unwanted items.

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                © 2014 Corcoran News

                National Night Out highlights

                Sun, 2014-09-28 14:48
                Corcoran News

                Parks and Wreck, local band started at the Corcoran Rec Center, plays for neighbors during NNO. Members include Vina Onyango-Robshaw on vocals, Minnie Lopez on bass, Oscar Cozza on guitar, and Eric Silva-Brenneman sitting in on drums.

                3000 21st Ave S – “Steve Hobert and Jeff Schraw jam out for the crowd at the 30XX block of 21st Ave during National Night Out.” – Ryan Peterson

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                Parks and Wreck, local band started at the Corcoran Rec Center, plays for neighbors during NNO. Members include Vina Onyango-Robshaw on vocals, Minnie Lopez on bass, Oscar Cozza on guitar, and Eric Silva-Brenneman sitting in on drums.

                3000 21st Ave S – “Steve Hobert and Jeff Schraw jam out for the crowd at the 30XX block of 21st Ave during National Night Out.” – Ryan Peterson

                Contribute, advertise, or learn more about Corcoran News.
                Click here for current edition.

                © 2014 Corcoran News

                Invitation to look up close at Bassett Creek Valley redevelopment

                Fri, 2014-09-26 15:47
                Margo Ashmore North News

                When all else fails, walk the site and show what people are talking about. That’s what the Bassett Creek Valley Redevelopment Oversight Committee (the ROC) decided as the next step toward their goal, getting rid of the city’s Impound Lot.

                Unhappy with city staff who keep coming back with proposals to instead shrink the site, the ROC will be inviting the chair of the Transportation and Public Works Committee, First Ward Council Member Kevin Reich, as well as local council members, to come out and look over what so often gets discussed only in terms of aerial maps.

                Neighbors, many of whom own businesses, say they have dealt with tow truck drivers blocking traffic while filling out paperwork or arguing with each other while idling on surrounding city streets. They’ve seen people switching license plates on the street. They’ve attributed rashes of break-ins and burglaries to being near the lot.

                But it’s arguably a citywide issue of highest and best use for prime land near the center of the city, ROC members said, considering what to do to enlist media or otherwise get the attention of more decision makers; to make the issue as urgent as the recent debate over the Southwest Light Rail route. Mentioning civil disobedience as a strategy, Shauen VT Pearce, Executive Director of the Harrison Neighborhood Association said, “We have enough people to start blocking tow trucks.”

                ROC member Brian Willette said “The first thing this committee did [about 20 years ago] is say we have to change the character of the area. A shrunken lot doesn’t do that. It is just prettying it up a bit.”

                ROC member Jerry Krause said, “The fact that no one [anywhere else in the city] will accept this facility” shows how bad it is, and how weak the community is. They discussed the lot’s history as relatively recent and prior to that, the functions were at scattered sites, one presumed. The “built” date listed on the Hennepin County Property Information website is 1987, 27 years ago.

                The city owns the huge odd-shaped parcel that holds the Impound Lot. It stretches westward from what would be Bryant Avenue to what would be Logan Avenue if both streets went through, north of the BNSF and Union Pacific tracks south of what would be Chestnut Avenue (one block south of 2nd Avenue North). Bryn Mawr Meadows is to the north of it on the western edge, and industries and adapted warehouses and other commercial buildings dot the landscape on the east.

                This land is prime but also will be expensive to build on, said Jeremy Jacobs of Ryan Companies, their new Development Manager for the North Central Region. Ryan representatives have been working with the ROC for many years, having come up with Linden Yards West, a proposal for a huge business and housing campus. It would allow people to live, work and play all in the same area. Linden Yards West would take advantage of proximity to the expected Southwest Light Rail Transit.

                The Impound Lot is near their proposed site, which has been referred to as “the banana.” “The future of the Impound Lot is a community issue first, then a development issue,” Jacobs said, “We could get behind a partial solution. We need the police cars moved.” (The site includes a police forensics operation and police holding of cars for evidence.)

                When ROC members said essentially “shush, don’t say that, we want it totally gone,” Jacob said Ryan would be supportive of that stance, but reminded them the company was already on the public record as being open to a partial solution. “Development when done right can change a community,” he said. Eyes on the street, beautification, gentrification can push crime into other areas, and put pressure on to remove remaining blight.

                Rev. Charles Stalling, potentially a new representative to the ROC from Harrison neighborhood, likened the process to chess game in which one party knows that if their opponent got their act together they could win; but they draw out the game to delay that eventuality.

                Jacobs explained Ryan’s market challenges. Southwest LRT, a long-range benefit, may be delayed further by litigation. Then, “the Minneapolis office market has never been worse, but in three to five years there will be a wave of young employees” not impressed with the aging work places in downtown Minneapolis. Smart businesses will locate in or relocate to such areas to attract a workforce that wants live-work-play, he speculated.

                Ryan has invested “probably $2 million” into investigating and designing to the area’s potential. Where rents in existing buildings are topping out at $24 per square foot, their project will require $25 per square foot. “They’ve been doing their due diligence,” he said of his colleagues. Having lots of conversations with potential users, “and the big question is what’s it going to cost. There are no sewers there, and in a way that’s good,“ Jacobs said, recalling an opportunity in Vancouver where the developer would build their own ecosystem, a chance to be innovative and environmentally conscious.

                “And that’s the marketing side of it,” said Pat Carney, a ROC member whose graphics and marketing agency is on Colfax and Glenwood. “Do we want this area to be known as having an elevated highway and rusted cars, or an elevated highway and a world class art gallery? Because that’s where we are, the Sculpture Garden is within walking distance, but the Impound Lot is in the way.”

                An audible “ooh!” arose from the group when Jacobs equated “Bassett Creek Valley” with “Big City Vision.”

                The city’s side, and residents’ challenge

                Back to the local, immediate chess game. Beth Grosen of the city’s Community Planning and Economic Development department attended the meeting as she has attended many meetings. The Impound Lot is the Public Works department’s facility; Grosen does not have jurisdiction over it, but would help facilitate changes. Grosen and community members have agreed that the city staff and elected officials’ stance on the lot has been: “The previous city council tied our hands, we can’t move it.”

                “I have consulted with electeds,” Grosen said, “And they still say shrink, improve, redevelop as much as possible. My goal is to try to really shrink it, that junk cars should not be the view. It should look like a corporate parking lot. My personal preference is to move it east. “

                The Hennepin County website property address is 50 Dupont Ave. N., Google lists the lot as 51 Colfax. East of Girard, immediate neighbors are a massive bus operation for Minneapolis Public Schools, a City Community Planning and Economic Development-owned parcel, and an Xcel Energy operation.

                She said the Public Works staff have taken complaints to heart, and they are working on rules about doing paperwork at the site of a tow rather than while waiting to get into the lot. “They’ll try to get the trucks off the public streets,” now and in designing the access to a shrunken site.

                Russ Adams of the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability said, “I’m not convinced we’ve exhausted alternatives,” and mentioned an underutilized spot at Fort Snelling where perhaps a six-acre site could be used if built into a simple two-level parking ramp. (Twelve acres is the smallest footprint that officials have estimated could accommodate the basic impound function.)

                Jules Inda raised a possibility, discussed before, of moving the lot to the end of the Hiawatha line under some overpasses near the airport. Grosen said staff had looked into that and found the zoning was wrong and the Metropolitan Airports Commission staff didn’t want it. Inda said, “I would ask for an investigation of what it would take to re-zone. There’s an opportunity there, to improve a neighborhood [here] and not sacrifice anything” on the other end, with no residences or businesses at the airport site.

                Inda made the point that people now need to walk about four long windy blocks in the winter from the nearest bus to deal with their cars. And these are often people who are elderly, handicapped, or who have other challenges, which led to their inability to deal with avoiding the tow in the first place.

                The idea surfaced again, of keeping vehicles within the neighborhoods or blocks they’ve been towed from during snow emergencies. One of the committee members has experience with this program in Rochester, MN (see NorthNews, May 28, 2014).

                Vida Ditter of Bryn Mawr neighborhood, who like many around the table have been dedicated to the ROC since its formation about 20 years ago, said “we complained and [Public Works Director] Steve Kotke put a stop to improvements to the building four or five years ago. We’ve asked these questions before.”

                When all else fails, walk the site and show what people are talking about. That’s what the Bassett Creek Valley Redevelopment Oversight Committee (the ROC) decided as the next step toward their goal, getting rid of the city’s Impound Lot.

                Unhappy with city staff who keep coming back with proposals to instead shrink the site, the ROC will be inviting the chair of the Transportation and Public Works Committee, First Ward Council Member Kevin Reich, as well as local council members, to come out and look over what so often gets discussed only in terms of aerial maps.

                Neighbors, many of whom own businesses, say they have dealt with tow truck drivers blocking traffic while filling out paperwork or arguing with each other while idling on surrounding city streets. They’ve seen people switching license plates on the street. They’ve attributed rashes of break-ins and burglaries to being near the lot.

                But it’s arguably a citywide issue of highest and best use for prime land near the center of the city, ROC members said, considering what to do to enlist media or otherwise get the attention of more decision makers; to make the issue as urgent as the recent debate over the Southwest Light Rail route. Mentioning civil disobedience as a strategy, Shauen VT Pearce, Executive Director of the Harrison Neighborhood Association said, “We have enough people to start blocking tow trucks.”

                ROC member Brian Willette said “The first thing this committee did [about 20 years ago] is say we have to change the character of the area. A shrunken lot doesn’t do that. It is just prettying it up a bit.”

                ROC member Jerry Krause said, “The fact that no one [anywhere else in the city] will accept this facility” shows how bad it is, and how weak the community is. They discussed the lot’s history as relatively recent and prior to that, the functions were at scattered sites, one presumed. The “built” date listed on the Hennepin County Property Information website is 1987, 27 years ago.

                The city owns the huge odd-shaped parcel that holds the Impound Lot. It stretches westward from what would be Bryant Avenue to what would be Logan Avenue if both streets went through, north of the BNSF and Union Pacific tracks south of what would be Chestnut Avenue (one block south of 2nd Avenue North). Bryn Mawr Meadows is to the north of it on the western edge, and industries and adapted warehouses and other commercial buildings dot the landscape on the east.

                This land is prime but also will be expensive to build on, said Jeremy Jacobs of Ryan Companies, their new Development Manager for the North Central Region. Ryan representatives have been working with the ROC for many years, having come up with Linden Yards West, a proposal for a huge business and housing campus. It would allow people to live, work and play all in the same area. Linden Yards West would take advantage of proximity to the expected Southwest Light Rail Transit.

                The Impound Lot is near their proposed site, which has been referred to as “the banana.” “The future of the Impound Lot is a community issue first, then a development issue,” Jacobs said, “We could get behind a partial solution. We need the police cars moved.” (The site includes a police forensics operation and police holding of cars for evidence.)

                When ROC members said essentially “shush, don’t say that, we want it totally gone,” Jacob said Ryan would be supportive of that stance, but reminded them the company was already on the public record as being open to a partial solution. “Development when done right can change a community,” he said. Eyes on the street, beautification, gentrification can push crime into other areas, and put pressure on to remove remaining blight.

                Rev. Charles Stalling, potentially a new representative to the ROC from Harrison neighborhood, likened the process to chess game in which one party knows that if their opponent got their act together they could win; but they draw out the game to delay that eventuality.

                Jacobs explained Ryan’s market challenges. Southwest LRT, a long-range benefit, may be delayed further by litigation. Then, “the Minneapolis office market has never been worse, but in three to five years there will be a wave of young employees” not impressed with the aging work places in downtown Minneapolis. Smart businesses will locate in or relocate to such areas to attract a workforce that wants live-work-play, he speculated.

                Ryan has invested “probably $2 million” into investigating and designing to the area’s potential. Where rents in existing buildings are topping out at $24 per square foot, their project will require $25 per square foot. “They’ve been doing their due diligence,” he said of his colleagues. Having lots of conversations with potential users, “and the big question is what’s it going to cost. There are no sewers there, and in a way that’s good,“ Jacobs said, recalling an opportunity in Vancouver where the developer would build their own ecosystem, a chance to be innovative and environmentally conscious.

                “And that’s the marketing side of it,” said Pat Carney, a ROC member whose graphics and marketing agency is on Colfax and Glenwood. “Do we want this area to be known as having an elevated highway and rusted cars, or an elevated highway and a world class art gallery? Because that’s where we are, the Sculpture Garden is within walking distance, but the Impound Lot is in the way.”

                An audible “ooh!” arose from the group when Jacobs equated “Bassett Creek Valley” with “Big City Vision.”

                The city’s side, and residents’ challenge

                Back to the local, immediate chess game. Beth Grosen of the city’s Community Planning and Economic Development department attended the meeting as she has attended many meetings. The Impound Lot is the Public Works department’s facility; Grosen does not have jurisdiction over it, but would help facilitate changes. Grosen and community members have agreed that the city staff and elected officials’ stance on the lot has been: “The previous city council tied our hands, we can’t move it.”

                “I have consulted with electeds,” Grosen said, “And they still say shrink, improve, redevelop as much as possible. My goal is to try to really shrink it, that junk cars should not be the view. It should look like a corporate parking lot. My personal preference is to move it east. “

                The Hennepin County website property address is 50 Dupont Ave. N., Google lists the lot as 51 Colfax. East of Girard, immediate neighbors are a massive bus operation for Minneapolis Public Schools, a City Community Planning and Economic Development-owned parcel, and an Xcel Energy operation.

                She said the Public Works staff have taken complaints to heart, and they are working on rules about doing paperwork at the site of a tow rather than while waiting to get into the lot. “They’ll try to get the trucks off the public streets,” now and in designing the access to a shrunken site.

                Russ Adams of the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability said, “I’m not convinced we’ve exhausted alternatives,” and mentioned an underutilized spot at Fort Snelling where perhaps a six-acre site could be used if built into a simple two-level parking ramp. (Twelve acres is the smallest footprint that officials have estimated could accommodate the basic impound function.)

                Jules Inda raised a possibility, discussed before, of moving the lot to the end of the Hiawatha line under some overpasses near the airport. Grosen said staff had looked into that and found the zoning was wrong and the Metropolitan Airports Commission staff didn’t want it. Inda said, “I would ask for an investigation of what it would take to re-zone. There’s an opportunity there, to improve a neighborhood [here] and not sacrifice anything” on the other end, with no residences or businesses at the airport site.

                Inda made the point that people now need to walk about four long windy blocks in the winter from the nearest bus to deal with their cars. And these are often people who are elderly, handicapped, or who have other challenges, which led to their inability to deal with avoiding the tow in the first place.

                The idea surfaced again, of keeping vehicles within the neighborhoods or blocks they’ve been towed from during snow emergencies. One of the committee members has experience with this program in Rochester, MN (see NorthNews, May 28, 2014).

                Vida Ditter of Bryn Mawr neighborhood, who like many around the table have been dedicated to the ROC since its formation about 20 years ago, said “we complained and [Public Works Director] Steve Kotke put a stop to improvements to the building four or five years ago. We’ve asked these questions before.”

                © 2014 North News

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