Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Parks, Minneapolis Public Schools, Density, Zoning, etc.
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FISHMANPET
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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby FISHMANPET » May 18th, 2015, 3:19 pm

acs wrote:
FISHMANPET wrote: A few changes I'd be OK with:
Zoning has to be contiguous. If you wanna upzone or downzone a lot, you have to also rezone every lot on that block (or maybe every lot facing the same street on that block would be more appropriate, but same difference).
Zoning has to be graduated. R1 can only border R2 can only border R3 etc etc. R1 can only border C1 or C2, R2 can border C1, C2, or C3, R3 can border C2, C3, C4, R4 can border C3 or C4, R5 and above can only border C4. You can move those boundaries around a bit but the general point still stands.
I generally agree with you this is how it should work, but in many cases you're going to run into problems with too many different zoning levels and not enough space. There's just too many levels of commercial to step down all the way from C4 to R whatever without taking up a huge amount of space.
Pulling this from the other thread and responding here, to try and make twincitizen happy :)

It'd be an interesting experiment, start with the most intense uses, and stepdown from there, and see how much of the city would be forcibly upzoned with my scheme.

But I may not have been clear, residential and commercial can be next to each other.

As it currently stands, for residential, there are 6 types of zonings (R1 vs R1A and R2 vs R2B are close enough to be lumped together). R1 and R2 are classified "low density," R3 and R4 and classified "medium density" and R4 and R5 are classified "high density." I'm not super familiair with the current Commercial zoning, but I'd bet you could easily classify them into "low," "medium," and "high" intensity. (My first instinct would be C1 and C2 are "low," C3A and C3S are "medium," and C4, very rare, would be "high" but it may be the case that the commerical code is stratifying on use not intensity, in which case who knows, it'd all have to be redone for this scheme). Everything in the Downtown zone would be considered "high." Office residential seems to also be more concerned with use than intensity, but at a glance I'd call OR1 "low," and OR2 and OR3 "high" (there would be no "medium" office residential). Industrial I'm not really sure about, other than to say that "light industrial" should just be folded into commercial, and then there should be some kind of separation of medium and general from other zones, depending on actual use of the facility.

So, now that everything is "low," "medium," or "high," it becomes quite simple. Low can be near low or medium. Medium can be by low or high. High can be by medium or high. You'd experience a general gradation of intense areas into quieter residential areas, and if demand ever intensified, zoning would adapt to accommodate that, rather than every new building being a fight.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby mattaudio » May 18th, 2015, 3:21 pm


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FISHMANPET
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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby FISHMANPET » May 18th, 2015, 3:24 pm

Well yeah I guess I just invented transects didn't I.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby HiawathaGuy » May 18th, 2015, 3:25 pm

FISHMANPET wrote:So, now that everything is "low," "medium," or "high," it becomes quite simple. Low can be near low or medium. Medium can be by low or high. High can be by medium or high. You'd experience a general gradation of intense areas into quieter residential areas, and if demand ever intensified, zoning would adapt to accommodate that, rather than every new building being a fight.
Great post! I think that's very logical and clear. It'd be interesting to see what your CM would think - or anyone at Minneapolis City Hall for that matter... It feels to me like whenever something should be simple, the Council likes to make it notsosimple.

If this city truly wants to keep growing and become more of a 24 hour City, changes need to be made.

I'd also be curious to see how other similar-sized cities do their zoning. Oftentimes it feels like things happen in vacuums or silos in this great country of ours. Transportation planning, Road planning, Zoning Laws, Growth Plans, etc.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby RailBaronYarr » May 18th, 2015, 7:20 pm

Portland's zoning districts matched ours pretty closely when I researched the Portland parking minimums streets.mn post I wrote. Just a few hours of reading and mapping different zones to ours and they mostly aligned. Maybe folks who did some formal urban studies can comment more, but my reading basically said New York's early codes were adopted very quickly across the country. Obviously things have changed over time in each area, but I'd guess most cities are pretty close.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby mister.shoes » May 26th, 2015, 11:58 am

This is somewhat related to the idea of MPLS (and StP, really) densifying. More people will also mean more families and more kids and, frankly, more traffic. So how to raise a kid amongst all of this?

http://www.minnpost.com/cityscape/2015/ ... win-cities
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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby Wedgeguy » May 26th, 2015, 12:34 pm

mister.shoes wrote:This is somewhat related to the idea of MPLS (and StP, really) densifying. More people will also mean more families and more kids and, frankly, more traffic. So how to raise a kid amongst all of this?

http://www.minnpost.com/cityscape/2015/ ... win-cities
There are plenty of neighborhoods here in the city where one can raise a family that is not in the concrete jungle. Kids have been raised in all sorts of environments for decades if not centuries.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby nickmgray » May 26th, 2015, 3:36 pm

I remember growing up in Rome with quite a bit of freedom. Our neighborhood was pretty safe, but really busy. I remember walking 15 blocks to school on my own when I was 9 or 10. By the time I was 14, I was allowed to go anywhere in the city by bus or metro. A few times I even went to the beach with a few friends when I was 14. The commute included a bus, metro A, metro B and a train (nearly a 2 hour trip).

Parents raising kids in the city are a lot different than those who raise kids in the suburbs. Also, there's a clear distinction between parents who raise kids in the core of the city versus traditional single family residential neighborhoods. Since there's less space to play in the core (no front or back yards), parents quickly teach their kids how to cross streets on their own so that they can get to the part that's 3-4 blocks away. To be honest, it's the white people who have the most issues "letting go" and teaching their kids to do things on their own. In my neighborhood, there are tons of hispanic and mung kids playing outside and riding their bikes, but we rarely see white kids out and about without a parent. It's a bit sad, especially since the neighborhood is predominantly white.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby tab » May 26th, 2015, 4:22 pm

Our urban neighborhood is a great place to raise kids. We can walk to the grocery store, the park, school, etc...
We lived in a suburb briefly during a transition between homes, and it was o.k. (and we are forever in debt to our generous hosts), but it was so refreshing to be back in an urban neighborhood again and walking everywhere. When we need 1-3 things from the store, we can send our 10-year old to pick them up, and that same trip in the suburb would have required a drivers license, which our 10-year old still lacks.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby mister.shoes » May 26th, 2015, 9:13 pm

I should have added a little context: mrs.shoes and I have talked a lot about wanting to teach baby.shoes how to get around the city on his own as he gets older. While we do have a SFH and a front/back yard, all of the above are pretty small. We are close enough to the creek that we like to think of it as our yard—there's more than enough green space there to occupy any child for a long time. We are also looking forward to walking to Pearl and McRae parks this summer. We both are completely on board with the idea of teaching our child(ren?) to be mobile and self-sufficient in MPLS without having to drive a car. 'Twas a good article about that very mentality, I thought.
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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby twincitizen » February 2nd, 2016, 6:37 pm

Latest downtown** population projects, according to the Downtown Council, as well as other good bits about downtown:
http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/b ... -rate.html

The greater downtown area added ~1,051 residents in 2015, bringing the total population just shy of 40,000.

They also note that nearly 1000 new units were added in 2015 and 680 more are currently under construction, with a whole bunch more that have been approved but are not underway yet.

**Downtown Council's definition of "downtown residents" includes all of Loring Park, Elliot Park, North Loop, and even a little slice of NE/SE along the river:
Image

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby Sacrelicio » February 2nd, 2016, 7:25 pm

nickmgray wrote:I remember growing up in Rome with quite a bit of freedom. Our neighborhood was pretty safe, but really busy. I remember walking 15 blocks to school on my own when I was 9 or 10. By the time I was 14, I was allowed to go anywhere in the city by bus or metro. A few times I even went to the beach with a few friends when I was 14. The commute included a bus, metro A, metro B and a train (nearly a 2 hour trip).

Parents raising kids in the city are a lot different than those who raise kids in the suburbs. Also, there's a clear distinction between parents who raise kids in the core of the city versus traditional single family residential neighborhoods. Since there's less space to play in the core (no front or back yards), parents quickly teach their kids how to cross streets on their own so that they can get to the part that's 3-4 blocks away. To be honest, it's the white people who have the most issues "letting go" and teaching their kids to do things on their own. In my neighborhood, there are tons of hispanic and mung kids playing outside and riding their bikes, but we rarely see white kids out and about without a parent. It's a bit sad, especially since the neighborhood is predominantly white.
My girlfriend was raised in SW Minneapolis and was just fine. I grew up in a suburb and there's definitely an attitude of kids needing as much private space as possible. Large house, big yard, the whole bit. It's "unfair" to raise them any other way. That's nonsense. Kids are raised in all kinds of cities all over the world. I actually envy city kids a bit because they were actually able to roam around more. I remember being so bored when I got a little older and before I had a driver's license.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby talindsay » February 3rd, 2016, 5:34 pm

Sacrelicio wrote:My girlfriend was raised in SW Minneapolis and was just fine. I grew up in a suburb and there's definitely an attitude of kids needing as much private space as possible. Large house, big yard, the whole bit. It's "unfair" to raise them any other way. That's nonsense. Kids are raised in all kinds of cities all over the world. I actually envy city kids a bit because they were actually able to roam around more. I remember being so bored when I got a little older and before I had a driver's license.
This is OT, but you're hitting on something I've often thought about: the notion of children as precious possessions, to be protected and sheltered, instead of as people who need to experience the world around them to prepare for it. You'll find people all over the spectrum in all sorts of places, and it's not fair to say that city kids are explorers and suburban kids are precious possessions, but the built environment certainly impacts prevailing attitudes in a place. With a park just a block away, and a postage-stamp-sized yard, it would be absurd to build a swing set just for our child; whereas in a suburb where the nearest park is too far to walk and the yard is big and empty, it seems fairly self-evident that you should put one in. Kids on an urban playground interact with lots of kids, many of whom aren't from the same socioeconomic background, race, class, or language; whereas kids in a backyard interact with nobody who isn't explicitly invited by their parents. It's exploratory play vs. playdates. The latter are safe, predictable, and fun; but the former are more likely to help develop social knowledge.

Now, to come up with some clever way to tie this in to the thread at hand: a key to Minneapolis' future growth is demonstrating that the benefits of raising kids in the city outstrip the disadvantages. Cities probably aren't as safe as suburbs for young children, but as long as they're safe *enough*, they offer many advantages.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Postby winterfan » February 4th, 2016, 10:26 am

talindsay wrote:This is OT, but you're hitting on something I've often thought about: the notion of children as precious possessions, to be protected and sheltered, instead of as people who need to experience the world around them to prepare for it. You'll find people all over the spectrum in all sorts of places, and it's not fair to say that city kids are explorers and suburban kids are precious possessions, but the built environment certainly impacts prevailing attitudes in a place. With a park just a block away, and a postage-stamp-sized yard, it would be absurd to build a swing set just for our child; whereas in a suburb where the nearest park is too far to walk and the yard is big and empty, it seems fairly self-evident that you should put one in. Kids on an urban playground interact with lots of kids, many of whom aren't from the same socioeconomic background, race, class, or language; whereas kids in a backyard interact with nobody who isn't explicitly invited by their parents. It's exploratory play vs. playdates. The latter are safe, predictable, and fun; but the former are more likely to help develop social knowledge.
Now, to come up with some clever way to tie this in to the thread at hand: a key to Minneapolis' future growth is demonstrating that the benefits of raising kids in the city outstrip the disadvantages. Cities probably aren't as safe as suburbs for young children, but as long as they're safe *enough*, they offer many advantages.
Ha, it's really, really hard to not overprotect children! I try not to do it because I know it's good to learn independence, but it's hard not to worry.

Anyway, to the topic at hand, we are raising our offspring in the city. I kind of laugh at this though, since we are in SW Mpls. Frankly, it's not all that urban to me. Not like living in Chicago, or even on the isthmus in Madison. For us, though, one of the biggest selling points about city living (aside from pre-war houses which we prefer) is sidewalks. I can't figure out how children are supposed to learn to ride a bike, go for a walk or rollerskate on busy suburban road.

About 10 years ago we looked at selling our Mpls home and purchasing a lovely old home in Deephaven. It was on a very pretty wooded lot not too far from Lake Mkta, the schools were lovely and it close to my job at the time. We almost took the plunge, but my husband and I just couldn't get over how isolated we would feel. The road outside the house barely had a shoulder. Although there was a park fairly close to the house, I wouldn't let kids walk there unsupervised. No way. There were way too many curves on the road and I don't trust drivers enough to pay attention.

Besides the sidewalks, we enjoy being able to bike to Harriet/Calhoun/Isles and walking to restaurants, stores, etc. Looking toward the future and the high school years, I am happy that the city bus will be an option for transportation and that they can get around on their own without a car.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth

Postby amiller92 » February 4th, 2016, 10:31 am

talindsay wrote: Cities probably aren't as safe as suburbs for young children
Hm. If the city allows the kid to spend a lot less time in a car, the city is probably a lot safer for children.

The kinds of things that make suburbs "safer" than cities are very low probability events (e.g., random crime). Car crashes less so.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Postby twinkess » February 4th, 2016, 10:32 am

About 10 years ago we looked at selling our Mpls home and purchasing a lovely old home in Deephaven.
I grew up in Deephaven actually, north-east of Thorpe Park. Where did you look?

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Postby winterfan » February 4th, 2016, 10:37 am

twinkess wrote:
About 10 years ago we looked at selling our Mpls home and purchasing a lovely old home in Deephaven.
I grew up in Deephaven actually, north-east of Thorpe Park. Where did you look?
It was right down the street from Thorpe Park. On Minnetonka Blvd. Did you enjoy the area as a kid?

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Postby twinkess » February 4th, 2016, 10:54 am

I did. We were on a lower volume street so we could play out there without much worry. We also went into the woods and down trails. Of course now I'm downtown.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Postby nordeast homer » February 4th, 2016, 12:16 pm

I grew up in SW Minneapolis and had parents that gave my brother and I a lot of freedom. We'd leave in the morning and were expected to be home for dinner, what we did in between was up to us, but we knew to stay out of trouble (kind of). We would take the bus downtown to wander the skyways and watch the construction going on. I was mugged for the first time when I was 16, but it never make me think twice about going back downtown.
I try to give my own kids as much freedom as possible. They don't like the bus, but they'll ride their bikes quite a distance and think nothing of going to the park to play hockey or go sledding. They appreciate the freedom, much like I did and they have yet to make me regret giving it to them.

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Re: Minneapolis Density and Population Growth (500k, etc)

Postby Wedgeguy » February 9th, 2016, 7:21 pm

There is definitely a very sharp and drawn line on the free range kids. I was a free range kid in a small town. I would ride my bike at age 10 a couple miles out of the city and back, or I might ride a Square mile section. I really feel sorry for today's youth in that they can not go explore their own city.


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