1.12.14

Reading the Highland Villager #119

[A Villager on a doormat. H/t Mike.]
[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. Until this newspaper goes online, sidewalk information must be set free.]


Headline: Neighbors unite to save old house from demolition
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: Someone bought an old house that needs a lot of repair and wants to tear it down instead of fixing it up because it's cheaper. They would then subdivide the house and build two much larger homes on the land. People stood outside the house holding candles. Article includes photo. Nobody knows what will happen. Nicole Curtis is mentioned. [The last thing Saint Paul needs is Nicole Curtis. Why can't she stay in Minneapolis?]


Headline: Luxury Apartments planned at Shepard-Davern
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: An old office building along the river is being redeveloped into apartment buildings. Some people like it, others are worried that the building will block their views. One woman is concerned about "adding more housing and traffic to the neighborhood." The neighborhood in question is referred to as "gateway village." [Really? Another "village"?] Shepard Road might also be re-routed to hopefully decrease some of the traffic on West 7th. The building is proposed to be six-stories, but does not seem to be mixed-use. There are other similar buildings planned for the area.


Headline: St. Paul looks at realigning Shepard/W.7th Intersection
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: The redevelopment above might coincide with a realignment of Shepard Road where it meets the Highway 5 bridge. There is no funding for the project yet. Some homes would be torn down. The idea is to shift traffic from West 7th onto Shepard Road [which is underused for a limited-access freeway design]. Article states that "Shepard Road would be engineered to slow traffic down to 35-40 mph." [Seeing is believing, though that's still too fast for an urban neighborhood.] There's also a transit study going on that might change everything.


Headline: City Hall wants to hear if you have a better idea for Ford site
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: [No they don't.]


Headline: Owner rejects historic status for St. Paul's last two movie theaters
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: The two old theaters in Saint Paul recently got a grant from the city to fix them up, and some folks in the preservation community want to also make sure the exteriors of the buildings are preserved, maybe even putting them on the National Register. The preservationists are upset about the recent rehab to the Highland Theater, especially the "sheet metal siding" covering the "Vitrolite ties." [Whatever that means.] The owners of the theaters, the Mann brothers, don't want the buildings preserved, at least not in that way. CM Tolbert says that the Manns have done a nice job so far.


Headline: Commission favors keeping current Sibley Plaza zoning; Recommendation moves planned redo of shopping center another step closer
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: A Saint Paul strip mall will not be forced to move its large parking lot away from the sidewalk because they have redevelopment plans. The whole area is being rezoned as part of a planning study. [The main problem with the street and the area is that West 7th is horribly dangerous and unwalkable, something that the plan doesn't really address.]


Headline: Redevelopment plan does not include spot for Cooper's; Loss of Highland location may mean upgrades to chain's West End grocery
Author: Kevin Driscoll

Short short version: The aforementioned strip mall redevelopment will eliminate the existing grocery store next summer. Instead, a new store called "Fresh Thyme Farmer's Market" will open up in the strip mall. [Really? Nothing about that name seems like it will be true.] Article includes quotes from owner of Cooper's Foods, including the fact that "Grandpa Joe and grandma Rose came west by horse-drawn wagon in 1917." Grocery retail is tremendously competitive. [Much of the public support for the strip mall at the zoning hearings was centered on people's appreciation of this store, so it's ironic that it's being forced to leave.]


Headline: BZA approves storm water runoff variance for Brandychase condos
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: A 1980s condo can change how water flows and freezes around it, which involves changing their parking lot. The "soil borings", existing trees, and sewer inflow are the issue. Apparently it's really icy as it is. [So boring.]


Headline: City defers to 2017 alley pickup of recycling in wheeled carts
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: The city has been trying to move recycling pickups from the street in blue bins to the alley in wheeled carts, but its taking longer than anyone thought and is also more expensive.


Headline: Macalester-Groveland delivers revised district plan to City Hall
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: The Mac-Grove neighborhood has a new district plan that limits teardowns, and many other things like town-gown issues and recycling.


Headline: County puts finishing touches to plan for reconstructing Randolph; project from Brimhall to I-35E will be done in stages in 2015-2016
Author: Jane McClure

Short short version: Ramsey County is reconstructing a big chunk of Randolph Avenue. Some people want traffic calming, but there isn't any. It will have 11' traffic lanes and 9' parking lanes and 5' sidewalks in each direction. [Those parking lanes seem large to me? This article doesn't mention anything about the intersections and widening the street to create turn lanes. That's the key detail.]

1 comment:

Carl said...

There are also THREE climate-change-denying letters to the editor each so moronic it must be seen to be believed.