Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Nature's Brutal Pruning: Images Of The Snowstorm's Impact In North Minneapolis

Photos and blog post by John Hoff

The impact of last weekend's storm is still being felt all over North Minneapolis: downed trees are still being cleaned up, many sidewalks at vacant, foreclosed houses are not shoveled and most likely won't be shoveled all winter unless neighbors begin calling 311.

Here are some images left over from the storm. In the top photo, a sign advertises...

the food shelf at Church of St. Phillip on 26th Ave. N. However, another sign on the church door stated the food shelf was closed due to the storm. I met a man who had appeared to have walked many blocks through thick snow to get to the food shelf that day, only to find it closed.

On 26th Ave. N., a major tree limb blocks the sidewalk.
On James Ave. N., a tree limb is down on a car.
In a backyard on Newton Ave. N., four separate branches have been lopped off a tree by the weight of snow and are piled up at the bottom of the tree. It's like the tree was brutally pruned, but with no regard to aesthetics; all that mattered was weight versus strength.
This tree in the yard of a house in the Hawthorne neighborhood won the prize for most spectacular storm damage. Lucky thing it missed the house when it came down!

And so winter begins with unusually early brutality.

On the bright side, during winter lawless thugs often stay indoors instead of shooting each other on hot summer streets during random encounters over simmering grudges. Drug dealers and prostitutes are easier to spot and report to 911, because their otherwise pointless "hanging out" on streets like Penn Ave. N. becomes more apparent. And, while an unmowed yard at a vacant, foreclosed house might merit a single 311 call a month, snowstorms which bury sidewalks allow 311 reports over and over to report the irresponsible bank-owned properties which need to be moved forward toward the housing market, faster faster faster.

I love winter in North Minneapolis.


Patrick said...

I've been calling 311 all day on the damn boarded houses where no one bothered to shovel. I think I actually have repetitive stress in my thumb from so many 311 dials.

Hey when you met that guy did you treat him to dinner or maybe take him to So Lo? That place is so checp it could almost be a food shelf.

Johnny Northside! said...

SoLo is indeed so cheap it is very nearly a food shelf.