West Calhoun Neighborhood Council

Read our COVID-19 Response Fund Notice (posted 4/1/2020).
In midst of the COVD-19 Outbreak, please reference the Minnesota Department of Health and/or the Center for Disease Control and Prevention for more information.

West Calhoun Neighborhood Council Agenda: April 2020


Monthly Board Meeting, 6PM, April 14, 2020

Join Zoom Meeting

Online: https://us04web.zoom.us/j/522625864

By Phone: +13126266799

Meeting ID: 522 625 864

6:00 – Welcome by the chair and announcements

6:05 – Council Business

  • Approval of March minutes
  • Treasurer’s Report
  • Priority Item: Approval of Neighborhood COVID-19 Response Fund
  • Annual public meeting in May: options for meeting virtually
  • Comment to the City on Neighborhoods 2020 Program Guidelines
  • Affordable housing loan discussion (up for renewal end of June)

6:30 – Neighborhood Response to COVID-19

  • Concern regarding Nice Ride release
  • Concern regarding social distancing around Bde Maka Ska
  • COVID-19 Shared Power Advisory Committees

7:00 – Committee Reports

  • Community Engagement and Outreach (COE): Movie in the Park: Aladdin Friday, July 3
  • Greenspace/Environment
  • Land Use: Construction Update: Light rail, West Lake Quarter (new name for Calhoun Towers), street lighting on Chowen-Abbott

7:20 – Miscellaneous Business

  • Newsletter – to go out in mid/late April (in time to announce our annual meeting, or postponement thereof

7:30 – Adjourn

Next Meeting – May 12th • 6:00pm • (TBD on method of meeting, please watch for future announcements)

Watch for the date of our next public meeting with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency on hazardous soil remediation at Calhoun Towers:POSTPONED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

Bakken Museum, 3537 Zenith Avenue South

Please read the attached letter in support of a neighborhood park.  Visit www.minneapolisparks.org/sw  to learn more about the park project, and see our letter we submitted here: Neighborhood Park Letter 

West Calhoun Neighborhood Council (WCNC) is a neighborhood organization that represents the interests of our part of Minneapolis to help maintain a livable and lovable community. We work with residents, businesses and others, to stay informed and involved around all aspects that affect where we live and work.

West Calhoun Neighborhood

West Calhoun map

We represent the residents and organizations that reside within these boundaries. Anyone in our neighborhood is considered a “member” automatically is invited to participate at meetings, join committees, attend events, and get involved!

WCNC Bylaws

 Neighborhood Survey/Neighborhood Name

Our spring newsletter, which was mailed to all neighborhood residential addresses, included a survey about neighborhood concerns, including a question about whether we should request a change of name for our neighborhood in recognition of the Park Board’s restoration of the Dakota name Bde Maka Ska for Lake Calhoun (a change which the Park Board is sticking too despite a so-far successful legal challenge). To date, we have received 65 responses to the name change question with 35 persons favoring retention of the West Calhoun name and 30 opting for change–either to West Maka Ska or West Lake (to match the name of our planned light rail station). Because the number of responses represents less than 3% of the neighborhood population, we intend to continue to dialogue with residents before deciding about a name change request. 

The survey asked about many other issues of concern to the neighborhood besides the question of a name change. Here is a summary of the responses:

There were several trends regarding what people felt was the most important issue in the neighborhood. The most common answers fell into 4 categories, traffic, greenspace, parking and density. Those who identified as homeowners had concerns that seemed to skew more heavily toward the increasing density of the neighborhood, the increased traffic this density might bring, preserving greenspace and overall slowing down changes to the neighborhood. Renters most important concerns were parking, affordability, pedestrian safety and increased transit options.

When it came to the most important safety issue, across the board the number one response was traffic safety. People seem to feel very unsafe walking and biking in this area.

The most common intersections that people felt were the most unsafe were Lake and Excelsior, Lake and Market Plaza, Excelsior and 32nd, and Lake & West Calhoun Parkway (which is actually in the CIDNA neighborhood).

Of renters who responded to the question, “What is the biggest renter issue” the answers generally fell into two categories, prices and parking. Renters feel their cost of living is too high and that there is not adequate parking.

Of the events that people want to see in West Calhoun, the most common answers were wine tastings, happy hours, movie nights, bbqs and community trash clean-ups around the greenspaces.

In regards to green space improvements, many neighbors want to see that the remaining greenspace in the neighborhood is preserved and taken care of, with suggestions of invasive species removal and tree planting included in some answers. Some respondents also wanted more benches in some areas and better drainage of the greenspace.

Finally, when asked “Are you aware of the Neighborhood 2040 plan?” There were 51 “Yes”, 4 “No” and 5 “Unsure/Maybe”. 5 people chose not to respond.

Park Board Changes all Park Roads Containing the name Calhoun

At their meeting of August 21, 2019 the Park Board Board of Commissioners approved the renaming of two streets in our neighborhood:

  • Calhoun Boulevard West to Bde Maka Ska Boulevard West
  • West Lake Calhoun Parkway to West Bde Maka Ska Parkway

The changes are now in effect.

Conservation District Proposed

Twenty-six homeowners in a 3.2 acre section of the neighborhood along Ivy Lane, Zenith Avenue and West 32nd Street have proposed that that their homes be designated a Conservation District. The purpose of the designation would be to preserve an island of historically and architecturally significant homes in a sea of increasing residential density in the vicinity of the planned West Lake light rail station. At its August 6th meeting your neighborhood council voted to go on record in support of the designation. The City’s Heritage Preservation Commission voted 5-3 in favor of initiating the process of creating the district at its September 17th meeting.