Green Line / Central Corridor construction thread (archive)

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bubzki2
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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby bubzki2 » December 17th, 2013, 11:02 am

Let's wait until it's actually running to make a judgment, shall we?

mplsjaromir
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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby mplsjaromir » December 17th, 2013, 11:11 am

Its impossible to predict the future but, there is a new high capacity fixed guide-way transit line supplemented by an already well used bus line. So the transit experience will likely improve for almost all users. My impression is that the street looks and functions better than it did before.

As far as businesses closing, the only reason their concerns got so much attention is that there was train track being laid. Anything to do with transit is clickbait, therefore gets ink (pixels). If University was just being rebuilt not 1/10 the amount of attention would be paid to the owners of the small businesses along the line.

At this juncture I have a hard time seeing how this is not an overall good for the area. If the new development of the area can leverage what LRT brings to the picture, it will be a grand slam.
Last edited by mplsjaromir on December 17th, 2013, 11:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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woofner
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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby woofner » December 17th, 2013, 11:48 am

UptownSport wrote: From the remarks above, most agenda driven UrbanMSP posters aren't capable of even considering there could be harm-
dude you forgot the '21' between 'agenda' and 'driven'
"Who rescued whom!"

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby FISHMANPET » December 17th, 2013, 12:11 pm

UptownSport wrote:
Suburban Outcast wrote:The solution to dealing with change is to make sure it is as beneficial for the general populace as it can be, and hopefully the Green Line will benefit the central cities.
That's the concern, here. Is the line overall beneficial , or, does the harm out weigh the good?


From the remarks above, most agenda driven UrbanMSP posters aren't capable of even considering there could be harm-
So, every day people die. Some of them get sick, some of them are killed in accidents, some of them are killed by other people, some of them are just old. But people die. Every day.

Also, every day, people are born. It just so happens that in most places more people are born every day than people that die. So most people would look at this and say that the population is growing. UptownSport would look at this statistic and somehow conclude that population is shrinking.

I'll say this again, the Central Corridor project was not a welfare project for those 34 businesses. The purpose of the Central Corridor project was not to support the specific businesses that existed at a specific point in time along the corridor.

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FISHMANPET
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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby FISHMANPET » December 17th, 2013, 12:12 pm

UptownSport wrote:
Suburban Outcast wrote:The solution to dealing with change is to make sure it is as beneficial for the general populace as it can be, and hopefully the Green Line will benefit the central cities.
That's the concern, here. Is the line overall beneficial , or, does the harm out weigh the good?


From the remarks above, most agenda driven UrbanMSP posters aren't capable of even considering there could be harm-
And for the love of God please explain to us all the harm that's going to come from this.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby bandar_seri_begawan » December 17th, 2013, 12:46 pm

You could definitely argue that (inevitable?) gentrification is harmful to the current residents and businesses that will get priced out, and that that's enough harm such that we shouldn't build the corridor. Not that I would.

EDIT: I don't have time to read this right now, but I find this quote interesting:

"the most predominant pattern we saw was one in which neighborhood renters are forced to pay more for housing and vehicle ownership becomes more common as neighborhood incomes rise. If gentrification is defined as a pattern of neighborhood change marked by rising housing costs and incomes, we found evidence of gentrification in the majority of newly transit-served neighborhoods we studied."
Last edited by bandar_seri_begawan on December 17th, 2013, 12:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby Suburban Outcast » December 17th, 2013, 12:49 pm

I'm not on an agenda. I just think the pros outweigh the cons of the project. UptownSport, I am quite capable of understanding the harm that this project has done to some people, but every project of this magnitude does have some sort of harm attached to it. Same for every other LRT expansion or freeways for that matter.

And yes gentrification is a buzz word, but it does exist and I think it does have to be acknowledged, but I do agree it's a natural part of growth. I also don't think every current resident or business will get priced out though.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby RailBaronYarr » December 17th, 2013, 1:01 pm

bandar_seri_begawan wrote:You could definitely argue that (inevitable?) gentrification is harmful to the current residents and businesses that will get priced out, and that that's enough harm such that we shouldn't build the corridor. Not that I would.

EDIT: I don't have time to read this right now, but I find this quote interesting:

"the most predominant pattern we saw was one in which neighborhood renters are forced to pay more for housing and vehicle ownership becomes more common as neighborhood incomes rise. If gentrification is defined as a pattern of neighborhood change marked by rising housing costs and incomes, we found evidence of gentrification in the majority of newly transit-served neighborhoods we studied."
Then one option is to not significantly limit housing stock (as neighborhoods along the line chose to do), which will drive up prices even more as the area becomes desirable. Given the benefits of the new line (and budding transit system including many enhanced bus connections), removing parking minimums within a 1/2 mile (1 mile?) walkshed can keep housing costs down. Another is a means of softening the blow of being priced out (which I've discussed in other threads - backside subsidies for those who can't afford to stay, time-limited vouchers who want to stay but are waiting for new units to open, subsidies for time spent looking for new housing for folks who can't easily take work off, etc etc).

I would hate to say that the societal benefits of improved access to jobs and amenities, along with environmental impact reduction, shouldn't be wholesale avoided because gentrification is likely to occur.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby FISHMANPET » December 17th, 2013, 1:17 pm

If transit improvements cause gentrification, then we just shouldn't improve transit? The best way to help poor people is to leave them alone and not try and give them better transportation?

I can understand that gentrification, whatever it may be, will happen, and steps can be taken to mitigate it, but if you argue against an improvement because it might cause gentrification, you're basically saying it's better to leave the poor in their squalor.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby David Greene » December 17th, 2013, 1:34 pm

Tom H. wrote:'Gentrification' is always the scary buzz word with urban neighborhood improvements
That's pretty disrespectful. There are real concerns with rising property taxes, increasing rents, assessments and other things that make it more difficult for people who currently live there to stay there. To the people I talk to, "gentrification" means, "I can't live in my own neighborhood." Certainly we can all agree that if people want to stay where they are, they ought to be able to.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby David Greene » December 17th, 2013, 1:39 pm

FISHMANPET wrote:[Also, every day, people are born. It just so happens that in most places more people are born every day than people that die. So most people would look at this and say that the population is growing. UptownSport would look at this statistic and somehow conclude that population is shrinking.
Far be it from me to agree with UptownSport, but he does have a point and you missed it.

Yes, every day people die, but WHY do they die? Do people die unnecessarily? Certainly. Would they not have died if we had taken some different policy approach? Most likely.

It's not at all a contradiction to think some businesses failed due to construction and also say that there are now more businesses in the corridor.

I don't agree with UptownSport that any businesses closed due to construction means we should not have built the line. But I do agree that gentrification is an issue that we need to watch and act upon.
Last edited by David Greene on December 17th, 2013, 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby David Greene » December 17th, 2013, 1:42 pm

RailBaronYarr wrote:[Then one option is to not significantly limit housing stock (as neighborhoods along the line chose to do), which will drive up prices even more as the area becomes desirable. Given the benefits of the new line (and budding transit system including many enhanced bus connections), removing parking minimums within a 1/2 mile (1 mile?) walkshed can keep housing costs down. Another is a means of softening the blow of being priced out (which I've discussed in other threads - backside subsidies for those who can't afford to stay, time-limited vouchers who want to stay but are waiting for new units to open, subsidies for time spent looking for new housing for folks who can't easily take work off, etc etc).
These sound to me like great ways to mitigate gentrification. The height limit in the corridor is very unfortunate but is fixable.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby Suburban Outcast » December 17th, 2013, 1:43 pm

Continuing the subject of gentrification, there will probably be a premium to reside closely near an LRT station (just a guess). But what they can do for lower-income residents who can only afford properties farther away is to make sure to provide decent sidewalks and ample road space to bike to a station so they are only a short walk or bike ride away.

I think the thing with improving transit in the Twin Cities is promoting more ridership from both the people who rely on it (such as the lower-income bracket) and also making it desirable enough so you get even more ridership from people who ride out of convenience (such as they may have cars, but hate driving if they don't have to, etc.).

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby mplsjaromir » December 17th, 2013, 2:08 pm

Gentrification is really a symptom on NIMBYism. When desirable neighborhoods refuse to expand and house more people (the terms "historical significance" and "loss of character" are thrown around for justification) people have to find somewhere else to live. Sometimes that means lower income incumbent residents are priced out. Allow for desirable neighborhoods to grow, there will less pressure on incumbents.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby talindsay » December 17th, 2013, 2:21 pm

David Greene wrote:
Tom H. wrote:'Gentrification' is always the scary buzz word with urban neighborhood improvements
That's pretty disrespectful. There are real concerns with rising property taxes, increasing rents, assessments and other things that make it more difficult for people who currently live there to stay there. To the people I talk to, "gentrification" means, "I can't live in my own neighborhood." Certainly we can all agree that if people want to stay where they are, they ought to be able to.
You're both right. "Gentrification" is an amorphous big bad that's thrown around to oppose things, but there is also a process that can result in people being priced out of the neighborhood. The problem is in determining what portion of an area's changes can be anticipated and mitigated; also, determining how much a given project contributed to the dynamic changes of an area.

Public good can't be defined as anything that's good for the majority without consideration for others, but it also can't be defined as that which does no harm to anybody. The benefits are weighed carefully against the costs following complex bureaucratic formulae, but sometimes those aren't well calibrated to the local conditions.

Personally I think we need to acknowledge that some degree of gentrification is likely to happen in the immediate station areas, directly attributable to the creation of this transit amenity. We also need to acknowledge that a great degree of public good will be accomplished by the line. Paradoxically, the greatest recipients of the benefits are likely to be the same people who suffer the consequences. That's one thing about transit that makes it better than freeway projects, which typically harmed a distinctly different group from the group benefiting.

So the challenge is to stop arguing about whether the bogeyman of "gentrification" is good or bad - it's both, and it's not the bogeyman that should interest us. The region's task is to find ways to maximize the benefits while mitigating the harm. You'll notice I said "mitigating", not "eliminating" - some businesses have closed, more will be priced out; some renters will be forced out, and some homeowners may have to sell because of higher property taxes. We should try to minimize these, and to offer assistance to those affected; but we should also acknowledge that higher-density construction in the station areas will raise overall population in the area, which is a social good. This will also raise demand for services and employees, which is also good. A large percentage of those new jobs will be available to the populations living in the corridor, which will bring more choices and higher employment.

John F Kennedy said (probably quoting somebody else, but I don't know, sorry) that a rising tide lifts all boats. I suspect that a few boats turn over in the rising tide, but in general his statement is right. Bringing more density and wealth to the area will create all sorts of new opportunities for the population living there. We can't forget about the challenges of "gentrification" but we also shouldn't turn it into a bogeyman.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby Tom H. » December 17th, 2013, 2:55 pm

David Greene wrote:
Tom H. wrote:'Gentrification' is always the scary buzz word with urban neighborhood improvements
That's pretty disrespectful... Certainly we can all agree that if people want to stay where they are, they ought to be able to.
Apologies for any disrespect - that was not my intent. However, I'm not sure I agree with the second part of that quote. I don't really believe that, as a hard rule, current residents should be entitled to future residency, in perpetuity, no questions asked, if that is their desire. Certainly such a rule imposes a lot of negative externalities on the community which extend far into the future.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby UptownSport » December 18th, 2013, 11:18 am

talindsay wrote:John F Kennedy said (probably quoting somebody else, but I don't know, sorry) that a rising tide lifts all boats. I suspect that a few boats turn over in the rising tide, but in general his statement is right. Bringing more density and wealth to the area will create all sorts of new opportunities for the population living there. We can't forget about the challenges of "gentrification" but we also shouldn't turn it into a bogeyman.
He had problems with boats ...

Gentrification- I see new apartments / condo's along Hiawatha, but what else?
The bar near Whipple went under and is empty. For sale signs on Amble's building.
Development around Franklin stop??
Development around Lake Street stop??
Development around Cedar-Riverside stop??
I can't think of a single Starbucks (definition of gentrification) going up, except, in the VA canteen.

Hiawatha is unquestionably a success for riders, tho. The VA built a massive ramp- I'd guess mostly- but at least in part for commuters using their lot as a Park n Ride.

University was so auto dependent that the massive change of injecting a 'Berlin Wall' septum down the center and removing so much parking might be a big mistake.
People can go elsewhere and voids don't always get filled.
FISHMANPET wrote: UptownSport would look at this statistic and somehow conclude that population is shrinking.
Exhibit #1- I'll say again UrbanMSP isn't capable of even considering there could be harm, throw in a personal attack instead of discussing on the merits. Ram it thru- no criticism tolerated.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby UptownSport » December 18th, 2013, 11:21 am

David Greene wrote:I don't agree with UptownSport that any businesses closed due to construction means we should not have built the line.
Where did UptownSport say, or imply this????

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby nate » December 18th, 2013, 12:15 pm

I think it will be years or decades before we'll know for sure whether the Green line is a success or not. And even then, we'll argue over the extent to which LRT is responsible for successes or failures in the neighborhood.

I happen to look at University Ave and see a completely different picture from UptownSport, though. I strongly disagree that the tracks are a "Berlin Wall" that divides the neighborhood -- to me, they make what was a very wide and formless street feel much more cohesive and human-scaled. And I also think there are already signs that redevelopment will follow the line -- the University/Dale and University/Hamline projects, the Episcopal Homes expansion, the apartments completed between Raymond and Cretin, the proposal to redevelop the Sears parking lot in downtown St Paul, the residential conversion of old office buildings downtown....and the line hasn't even opened yet!

Some of this might have happened without the Green Line, but you'd have to work pretty hard to convince me that all of it would have.

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Re: Green Line (Central Corridor LRT)

Postby FISHMANPET » December 18th, 2013, 12:30 pm

I can't divine what your point is UptownSport. Is it just some whiny "won't somebody think of the children" or is there something else?


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