Reading the Highland Villager #86

[Basically the problem is that the best source of Saint Paul streets & sidewalks news is the Highland Villager, a very fine and historical newspaper. This wouldn't be a problem, except that its not available online. You basically have to live in or frequent Saint Paul to read it. That's why I'm reading the Highland Villager so that you don't have to. Until this newspaper goes online, sidewalk information must be set free.] 

Headline: Hopefuls make last bid for CIB funding
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: People are still trying to get city money for new sidewalks in the “Village,” because the old decorative brick sidewalks aren’t holding up. Also, some other things too (intersection safety improvement on West 7th, a rec center and area plan in Merriam Park). Chances are slim that any of these will get money from the mayor in August.

Headline: Building demolition begins at Ford plant
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: They’re knocking down the old automobile factory.

Headline: Supporters continue to push for study of Ayd Mill Road’s north end; CIB Committee ranked funding request near bottom of the pile.
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: [See above story.] Neighbors are trying to get the city to fund a study of solutions for Ayd Mill Road, but the city committee didn’t rank the project highly. People who have been upset for a long time [and rightly so] about the [quasi-]freeway running through neighborhood have become even more upset because of the new developments in the area. Article includes long and fascinating history of the Ayd Mill road, including all of former mayor Randy Kelly’s shenanigans. The study would look at traffic calming, reducing traffic levels, and adding bike facilities.

Headline: Buffalo Wild Wings reaches accord with neighbors; liquor licensse is expected to be approved this week
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: The Buffalo Wild Wings will have to open later than they’d like because it took a while to officially approve their liquor license. Neighbors upset by the incoming restaurant received concessions from the company, including no patio, quieter ventiliation, a 1 AM closing time, and redirected lighting.

Headline: Nina’s CafĂ© remodeling tops list of STAR recommendations
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: The rankings for city Neighborhood Sales Tax Revitlization (STAR) money were released. Top projects include: a new floor for Nina’s Coffee Shop, a grant for an urban farm, carpet in a homeless shelter, two different craft breweries / tap rooms, a mini-golf course, and other things.

Headline: Commodore Squash Club seeks city’s permission to serve liquor
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: The squash club next to the old [super art deco] Commodore Hotel will be allowed to serve booze, most likely, but only to members and their friends. Article includes concerns about the club becoming a “de facto bar,” a fate to be avoided.

Headline: St. Paul approves sound variance for more overnight light-rail work.
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: Workers will be allowed to put up electric catenary poles for the LRT at night, sometimes, except in lowertown, probably. “The permit application notes that the main noise will be the beeps from vehicles backing up.”

Headline: Historic status support grows for long vacant Island Station
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: People are trying to keep the long abandoned, old coal plant in the river valley from being knocked down. The owner wants to raze it.

Headline: Public can weigh in on plan for Marshall Ave. improvements
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: There will be a public meeting to discuss plans for traffic calming and streetscape improvements along Marshall between Snelling and the Cathedral. [It already happened, oops.]

Headline: Obama School to get lit sign despite objections
Reporter: Jane McClure
Short short version: An elementary school on Holly Avenue will be allowed to put up a sign with lights in it, despite neighbors concerns. Best quote: “All my neighbors and I are opposed to a lighted sign.” [Yes, the school is named after the Obamas. Seems a bit early to me, too, but then again, he already won the Nobel Peace Prize, didn’t he.]

Headline: Encore!: Victoria Theater
Reporter: Jane McClure

Short short version: People are trying to restore the Victoria Theater on University. You can buy it if you want. It’s for sale.

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