August greetings! Here’s city-related news for residents of Ward 1 and beyond.
Lakes, ponds & wetlands: Unless you live near one of our nearly 30 lakes, ponds, or wetlands (and even if you do), you probably don’t think much about the quality of surface water in St. Louis Park. But imagine taking a cool dip in Bass Lake, kayaking across clear waters in Twin Lakes, or taking a stroll along a healthy Minnehaha Creek just steps from Knollwood Mall. Cleaner surface water in St. Louis Park would add to our already great quality of life by providing more outdoor recreation opportunities, improved wildlife habitat, flood protection, and other benefits. Tomorrow, August 5, city council is set to approve an updated Surface Water Management Plan, which provides the opportunity to make surface water management a bigger priority in SLP than it is now, through increased collaboration and resource allocation. I’d like to advocate for this approach and I welcome your interest and support.
Spin tips & rules of the road: Have you tried a Spin scooter? There are currently about 100 Spin scooters in SLP. You can unlock a scooter for $1 and they cost 15 cents a minute to ride. Users without a smart phone or credit card or riders needing lower cost rides can get support here.
Here are a few pro tips, courtesy of SLP staff. Users must:
Have you had any experiences (pro or con) with Spin in SLP? Please share them here.
Safer streets in Fern Hill: Stop bars, speeding student drivers, roundabouts vs. stop signs … Fern Hill residents have been throughful and persistent in communicating their ideas and concerns about the safety of streets in their busy neighborhood. The good news is Fern Hill is scheduled for street & sidewalk improvements in 2020/2021, and now is the time to get even more involved. Public meetings for residents will begin later this month. You can get information on the project area and sign up for notices here.
Southwest Light Rail: A monthly newsletter is no way to stay updated on this complex, moving target of a project, but a reminder that you can sign up here for weekly updates, including road and trail closures and construction plans. But here’s an interesting virtual flyover of the entire route including station locations, points of interest, and design features like bridges, tunnels, and street intersections. You can also view helpful virtual tours of planned stations at Louisiana Ave. and Wooddale Ave and a visualization of the planned station at Beltline Boulevard, including a new trail bridge over the tracks and a park & ride feature.
City council & school board positions open: A total of seven local leadership positions are open for the November 5 local election, including mayor and two at-large city council members and four school board members. The filing period opened July 30 and closes August 13. For information on how to file for office visit here. To stay updated on who has filed for office visit here.
Meet me (again) in the parklet! My July meetup in the parklet was fun and well attended, so I’m doing it again. The Star Tribune ran a nice story about our little parklet last week, featuring comments by SLP’s Community Organizer Darius Gray about the how and why of parklets. Come on out on Sunday, August 25, between 1-3 pm for some sunshine and conversation. Hope to see you there!
Here’s a select list of upcoming meetings and events:
National Night Out is Tuesday, August 6. A record number of parties are scheduled in SLP this year! I’ll be out and about visiting as many Ward 1 parties as I can. Let’s hope for sunny skies and new connections between neighbors in our great city.
Former Sam's Club Site info session: Thursday, August 8, 6:15-7:30 pm, SLP Municipal Service Center, 7305 Oxford Street. This is an informational meeting on land uses and zoning controls proposed by the city to regulate future development. Please note that there are no formal proposals to redevelop the site at this time. Info here.
Texa-Tonka small area plan workshop: Tuesday, August 13, 6-7:30 pm, Lenox Community Center, 6715 Minnetonka Blvd. Work in small groups with planning consultants to explore ideas for renovation, redevelopment and enhancement of this area. Info here.
Solar Twin Cities’ Solar Power Hour: Tuesday, August 20, 6-7:30 pm, St. Louis Park City Hall, 5005 Minnetonka Blvd. Solar Twin Cities helps residents invest in lower cost solar installations for their homes and businesses through volume purchasing. Learn more about the basics of solar, its financial implications and how the program works. Info here.
SLP SEEDS Harvest Festival: Sunday, August 25, 10am-12:30 pm, Louisiana Oaks Edible Playground, 3520 Louisiana Ave. SLP SEEDS is a nonprofit organization supporting food equity, wellbeing and resilience through life-skill education, engagement and advocacy. Bike or ride the bus and see SLP Seeds’ seven gardens from this season! Free potluck lunch to follow. Info here.
Thanks for reading and please stay in touch!
I send out a monthly summary of city-related news to Ward 1 residents and interested others, posted here. If you’d like to receive it via email, let me know here.