Penn Ave N., blog post by John Hoff
Council Member and mayoral hopeful Gary Schiff has me on his email list, which is how I received the press release about a $10.5 million dollar project to put a mixed-use building on Lake Street near the light rail.
Oh, my. Let's all gaze upon the goodies Lake Street will be getting as a result of its open, accepting attitude toward light rail while North Minneapolis will be getting, well, Precious Boo Thang Sweet Sugar Sack, pictured above...
The Lake Street project will be SIX STORIES HIGH. Oh, my word. Are there ANY BUILDINGS AT ALL in North Minneapolis that are six stories high? I am racking my brain to come up with even ONE building that tall.
I am having a serious case of building envy. Right now.
This building will be mixed use, so I assume that means retail on the ground floor. And I don't mean retail like, "Crappy little building that somebody appears to be using as a barber shop, but most decent people are afraid to go inside." No, I mean like retail where the floors are cleaned more than a couple times a year.
Let's find out more, shall we? One bedroom units will start at $866. Wow, that sounds pretty affordable. Doesn't sound like gentrification to me, not at all! That sounds like the expected economic benefits of light rail going to the people who need it the most. And when I say "need," I don't mean "I really need a hooker, right now, and maybe if I close my eyes I can pretend that one was born a girl."
The building will be called the Hi-Lake Triangle. Wow, that sounds utilitarian yet sort of classy at the same time. As compared to, well...
Oh, wow. I am reading more stuff, here. It turns out Hi-Lake Triangle will have a fitness center and a community room for residents.
About a month ago I was talking to some nice folks who are involved with the development of West Broadway, and in the course of our lunch I aired an idea which I have dubbed the "Too Much Noise Hypothesis." It goes a little something like this:
Some of the most strident voices opposing a light rail line through North Minneapolis don't really oppose light rail at all. They simply want to kick up a big fuss, hoping there will be payments, payoffs, and gravy to be had in exchange for all the "suffering" (note the quote marks) they will have to endure if and when light rail came through. Of course, the problem with making all that "noise" is there's no way to control or modulate "faux dissent," which appears just like dissent. Some true dissenters may have even jumped aboard the bandwagon in all sincerity, not aware of ulterior motives of individuals driving the wagon.
Well, the economic gravy will be coming AFTER light rail goes through, not before. And it will go to the communities who embrace light rail instead of kicking up a big fuss and comparing the coming of light rail to (good God!) the destruction of the Rondo community. Yeah, really, it's more like when I-94 went through the countryside and some communities found themselves blessed and others were left out in the cold.
But who knows? Maybe some of those voices of opposition against the light rail just want to look out for their Precious Boo Thang Sweet Sugar Sack, pictured above.
I am not judging. Hey, maybe that's their thing.
But, honestly, couldn't this guy pictured above benefit from a MATCHING pink outfit? And isn't that the kind of benefit which would come from light rail?