Asthma impacts on our communities

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By robb, July 15, 2014 3:07 pm

Minnesota Public Radio has done a compelling story on the extent and impacts of asthma in our communities.  The story highlights the prevalence of asthma in urban neighborhoods and on communities already experiencing the impacts of health disparities.

This story reinforces our findings from the Hiawatha CARE project - where people repeatedly shared their concerns about asthma, its triggers, and its impacts on the health of their children.  These concerns led to the development of strategies to address indoor air quality, second hand smoke, and vehicle emissions in our CARE Community Action Plan.

Check the article for more information about the impacts of asthma including maps from our CARE Project partners at the Minnesota Department of Health.

“Picnic” at Adams Triangle

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By robb, July 7, 2014 1:02 pm

The Longfellow Community Council is hosting a community “picnic” to re-imagine the area’s underused green spaces.  The Longfellow Picnic Park will be happening at Adams Triangle on Sunday, July 20th from 11 am to 2 pm.

Bring a picnic and invite your friends.  Share ideas on what would make the Triangle a great community space.  There will be food, activities, and a raffle with prizes from local businesses. Check this link or the flyer below for more information.

Adams Triangle is one of several green spaces within the Minnehaha-Hiawatha corridor identified in the Strategic Investment Framework as an opportunity to create civic or community spaces in the area.

Longfellow Picnic Park

Hiawatha projects update

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By robb, June 11, 2014 10:29 am

Update 06.13:  Expect Hiawatha to be reduced to one lane Tuesday and Wednesday next week for median tree planting.

Project work along Hiawatha Avenue will be continuing for the next few weeks and should be completed by Independence Day.

Hiawatha Intersection Improvements: A few final areas of concrete need to be poured.  APS signals still need to be installed at the intersections.  Striping of the crosswalks and bike lanes along 32nd Street will start next week.

Hiawatha Avenue Landscaping: Around 165 trees and stumps have been removed from the corridor.  Tree planting will begin later this week in the boulevards.  Median tree planting is planned for next week and will require Hiawatha Ave to be reduced to one lane of traffic [lane closures are limited to off-peak hours].

Thanks for your patience as we work toward a more pedestrian, bike, transit, and vehicle-friendly Hiawatha Avenue.

Hiawatha Ave Construction Image

Hiawatha landscape restoration begins

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By robb, June 4, 2014 7:18 am

Construction is beginning on a project to improve the landscaping along Hiawatha Avenue.  Starting this week, our contractors will begin removing approximately 165 trees along Hiawatha Avenue from 32nd to 46th streets.  Expect some temporary lane closures as the contractors work in the medians on removals and restoration.

The removed trees will be chipped and dropped off at the Park Board’s neighborhood wood chip site at 29th Street East and 18th Ave South.

Replacing these trees will be 350 trees in the boulevards, median, and in the area between the LRT line and bike/ped trail.  These trees will include 16 different species proven to withstand harsh urban environments:

Scarlet Jewel Maple Autumn Blaze Maple
Autumn Brilliance Serviceberry Common Hackberry
Eastern Redbud Thornless Cockspur Hawthorn
Princeton Sentry Ginkgo Espresso Kentucky Coffeetree
Amur Maackia Pink Spire Crab
Prairifire Crab Apple Red Jewell Crab Apple
Spring Snow Crab Apple Urban Pinnacle Oak
Sentry American Linden Princeton Elm

These trees will not only improve the aesthics of the corridor, but also help improve air quality and create a better environment for pedestrians and bikers in the area.  More information is available on the project webpage.

Bike lanes planned for 32nd Steet

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By robb, May 22, 2014 7:35 am

This summer, Hennepin County and the City of Minneapolis will be installing new bike lanes on 32nd Street between Hiawatha and Minnehaha avenues.  This project is included as part of the Hiawatha Avenue intersection improvement project, which aims to improve pedestrian and cyclist access to and across Hiawatha Avenue.

Throughout the planning process for the intersection improvement project, community members and the Corcoran Neighborhood Organization raised concerns about the existing bike friendliness of 32nd Street.  The route is a key east-west connection between Longfellow and Corcoran, and also an important route for students who live in Longfellow and attend South High.  Yet, the lack of bike facilities on the street made it a less-than-ideal route for bikers and students.

The new design will add east- and west-bound bike lanes along 32nd Street within the existing road width.  There is a short section – on the east side of Hiawatha Avenue – where road space is limited, so alternative treatments are being proposed.  The new lanes will also connect to existing north-south bike facilities on Minnehaha and Hiawatha avenues, improving connectivity in the area.  Check the proposed design for more details.

32nd Street Bike Lane Design

City water main work under Minnehaha Avenue

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By robb, May 16, 2014 2:54 pm

The Minneapolis Water department will be cleaning and lining the existing water main that runs on the west side of Minnehaha Avenue.   They will do the section from East 38th Street to Nawadaha Boulevard in 2014 and the section from Lake Street to East 38th Street in 2015.

There are three stages involved in this process.

  1. The City is setting up traffic control and temporary water service, and they are digging access holes in street (10-by-10 foot openings at 500 to 600 foot intervals).
  2. In a few weeks, a contracting crew will use the access holes to clean the water main.  A second crew will follow and spray a cement/mortar lining on the freshly cleaned interior of the main.  Work will continue down the main.
  3. As the contractor finishes its work, City forces will install new main to replace the sections that were cut out and disinfect the entire segment.  When the main is ready for service the holes will be filled and street restored.

Because of the amount of time needed for set up, cleaning and lining, and reinstatement, Minneapolis Water chose to do this work one year prior to the County’s reconstruction of Minnehaha.  The contractor’s work is scheduled to begin on June 3 and finish around July 4.

Properties near access holes will occasionally see no parking signs posted in front of their property for brief periods to accommodate loading and unloading of material.