Northside - General Topics

Northeast, Near North, Camden, Old St. Anthony, University and surrounding neighborhoods
MNdible
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby MNdible » January 27th, 2017, 9:41 am

I mentioned this bus hub project some time ago somewhere. Unfortunately, at the time I misconstrued it to be a Metro Transit project when in fact it's a Metropolitan Transportation Network project (school buses). Come on, that's just confusing.
An idle 2-acre industrial property in north Minneapolis will be redeveloped into a regional operations hub for expanding school-bus company Metropolitan Transportation Network (MTN) of Fridley.MTN plans to spend $1.4 million to upgrade and expand the existing buildings and paved outdoor storage facility on the site at 4640 Lyndale Av. N.

EOst
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby EOst » February 28th, 2017, 10:38 am

Hearing today (4:30pm) at the Heritage Preservation Commission on the proposed Homewood historic district. Sounds like a large group of residents have organized to oppose it.

EOst
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby EOst » March 1st, 2017, 11:16 am

^The district passed at the HPC. Next up, city council.

(here's the staff report if you haven't seen it: http://www.minneapolismn.gov/www/groups ... 194469.pdf)

amiller92
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby amiller92 » March 1st, 2017, 2:16 pm

I don't know, man. I think you could write essentially that about any given south Minneapolis neighborhood. It talks a lot about the Jewish community there, but doesn't really say anything about how these homes signify them.

I'm not terribly familiar with the area, but it looks like all of the other parts of the city that were built between 1900 and 1950 (which are many). Some of them have associations (and redlining) with specific ethnic groups too.

As usual, I'd prefer to preserve specific historically significant structures, judged on their own merits. Just being a house from a broad period of time should not be enough.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby RailBaronYarr » March 1st, 2017, 3:32 pm

Coming down on the anti-district side on this one. Some thoughts why:

- The district is huge. Like 80 acres - many blocks worth. That's too much.
- There's nothing distinguishing the architecture from literally any other neighborhood built around the same time (as Adam notes). The HPC even notes this, saying "The district embodies the distinctive characteristics of middle-class residential housing styles popular during the 1910s through the 1940s including; Tudor Revival, Colonial Revival, Spanish Revival, Craftsman and Prairie styles."
- Is preserving structures the best way to memorialize the anti-Semitism of the time? What is it about the exterior of these homes, or the street layout, or the contributing garages that makes their (very real! very important!) struggle apparent to someone walking through?
- We are building a literal light rail line with a station to the immediate west of this neighborhood, and another station to the south of the SE corner of the proposed district. All of the district is within the 10 minute walk shed of one of those two stations, with a large chunk of it within a 5 minute walk of one of them. We are also building the C Line along Penn, with a station at the NE corner of the district. Aside from this future transit paradise, it's got easy access by car to downtown and western/SW burb jobs, and is very close to one of the region's best large parks. We made a mistake (IMO!) by running Bottineau away from the major commercial and residential clusters in North, but to the extent that it can allow/spur/whatever any development near the stations we do build, we should allow it. Especially since home prices in this area right now are still low enough that the market can provide intensification at moderate (not luxury) prices (and we can make that better through city policy with affordability requirements).

Really, it would be great if maybe we identified the 10? best properties that exemplify the era. Maybe they should be contiguous on a block. Maybe spread out throughout the proposed district. But most important to me is how we actually make the history publicly available and relevant. Maybe have the city/county/Historical Society purchase 3 of those homes. Do the following:

- Turn one into a local Jewish history building detailing religious redlining in the city/region. Tell stories with videos, pictures, excerpts, etc. Let people come through. Have traditional food be something people can experience. Host private parties there in evening hours. Whatever!
- Turn one into a model home of what it was actually likely to live in these houses back then. Convert the kitchen, bathrooms, basement, whatever to how they would have been used.
- Turn one into a learning center for local architects/master builders that helped design and construct this neighborhood. Build some great 3D tours of the neighborhood as best we can so people can experience a "virtual walk-through" of the neighborhood with all these homes, make that an experience in the house but also put that information online.

Preserving a bunch of houses just doesn't seem to do justice to whatever story or history we're even trying to tell. This feels too much like a way for neighbors to keep LRT-spurred development from happening (from the report: "The Bottineau LRT 106 process and draft Station Area Plans identified possible adverse effects on the Homewood area due to future development pressure that could result from the infrastructure investment. As a part of this study, the creation of a historic district was one of the recommended strategies to address this concern.")

EOst
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby EOst » March 1st, 2017, 3:43 pm

Anyone want to go on a walk of the proposed district this weekend? It'll be 60 degrees and sunny on Sunday.

David Greene
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby David Greene » March 1st, 2017, 9:05 pm

I would encourage people to go look. The district may be too big. But there are some very unique homes there, built for the merchant class of the time.

I absolutely agree that the history of redlining and exclusion needs to be part of any historic district here. It's a significant piece of North Minneapolis history.

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amiller92
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby amiller92 » March 2nd, 2017, 11:14 am

I will probably try to bike around over there this weekend.

In reading the report, I kept hoping to find a synagogue or commercial node or something specifically signifying the community that could anchor the district and actually be used to tell the story.

But I think the bottom line is that it's just to big.

EOst
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby EOst » March 2nd, 2017, 11:30 am

The synagogues were in a ring just outside the neighborhood: Beth El at 14th and Penn, Mikro Kodesh at 10th and Oliver, Sharei Zedeck at 12th and Morgan. The latter two are already landmarked.

The former Jewish commercial institutions on Plymouth were razed when the rest of the street burned or was redeveloped.

beige_box
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby beige_box » March 2nd, 2017, 1:42 pm

David Greene wrote: I absolutely agree that the history of redlining and exclusion needs to be part of any historic district here. It's a significant piece of North Minneapolis history.
As though the forces of exclusion are over and done with?

Maybe we shouldn't officially enshrine the socioeconomic processes that North has come to symbolize until we've reined in the institutions that drive them.

seanrichardryan
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby seanrichardryan » March 2nd, 2017, 2:04 pm

Image
Q. What, what? A. In da butt.

amiller92
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby amiller92 » March 6th, 2017, 1:15 pm

I biked around the Homewood area a bit yesterday. I might try to write a something longer for a post, but unfortunately didn't take any pictures.

As one would expect from reading the report, this looks like a typical, nice neighborhood built in the first half of the 20th century, with houses very much like those that exist all across the city. To my eye, the two exceptions are Farwell Park, around which the neighborhood is centered, and a handful of mansions (all appear to be have been subdivided) along Washburn avenue, on a bluff overlooking Theodore Wirth Park.

Given that these are houses that are typical across the city, and given that as such their exteriors don't say anything at all about the history that's supposed to be the basis for this historic district, I think the proposed district is clearly much too large. My amatuer proposal would be a small historic district in the area immediately surrounding the park, ideally with something added to the park that tells the historical story, and spot protection for any houses associated with notable individuals. I'd be willing to discuss whether the mansions get protection, but I wonder whether that will happen on its own as property values rise and also whether we really need to keep mansions around absent something that makes them important.

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Homewood2009
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby Homewood2009 » October 12th, 2017, 5:39 am

It's nice to see some new develpment coming to the intersection of Penn and Plymouth near where I live in the Homewood neighborhood. Currently we are getting a new headquartrs for Thor construction, and what I believe to be, a new building to replace the funeral home across the street. They wll be nice additions to my part of the city. I'm hoping that the new development will bring in some type of restaurant or coffee shop.

SurlyLHT
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby SurlyLHT » November 21st, 2017, 10:54 am

Satori apartments on W. Broadway. They look pretty nice, it'll be great to see them get built.

http://minneapolismn.gov/www/groups/pub ... 206624.pdf

lordmoke
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby lordmoke » November 21st, 2017, 12:49 pm

Gross, I thought this was dead. (At least it's smaller than before?) Site is almost entirely surrounded by parking, but yeah let's demo the existing buildings with good street frontage. I get that they're in really rough shape, but still. Also not into the driveway/ parking lot on W Broadway itself.

David Greene
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Re: Northside - General Topics

Postby David Greene » November 21st, 2017, 12:55 pm

I think the new building looks nice. It's really only one curb cut on Broadway. Not ideal, but not terrible, terrible, especially given the monstrous Cub next door.

My only hesitation is the affordability of the new commercial space vs. the old. Sounds like the existing buildings are in pretty rough shape so maybe there is no viable existing commercial space.


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