July 11, 2006 Minutes

West Calhoun Neighborhood Council

DRAFT Minutes 7/11/06


Present: Todd Wildermuth, Greg Benz, Barb Stevens, Rosemary Lundell, Mari Taffe, George Effrem, MGC Rep Cher Underwood Forsberg, coordinator Ahndi Fridell

Absent:  Dan Blackburn

Guests: CM Betsy Hodges, Twin Cities Marathon reps Dennis Babcock,


Treasurer’s report

Barb reported that there is $1143.98 in the NRP account and $481.09 in the development account.  She got a couple bills, PostNet and do-good.  Approx $700 for last minute (?), more money should be coming soon.


Council Member Comments – Betsy Hodges

  • Ben – traffic light fixed?  Give her feedback if not fixed.  Rodgers told Betsy about issue with pedestrian light there too.
  • Met with people today re: W 32nd St, going wrong way on one-way.  They will start with signage.  Jim Jennings with Minikahda willing to track Minikahda people and send them a letter.  Try to make driveway one-way to club – will deter some.  Additional signs on Excelsior that the entrance is 2-way.  Rosemary brought up the timing of lights at that intersection.
  • George talked about the light at the Woodcarvers – sometimes 5-6 minute wait.
  • Path to Whole Foods from W 31st St – Ben checking on.
  • 7/20 7-9pm meeting at Christ the King regarding teardown, in-fill housing
  • Ward 13 breakfast 3rd Weds 8am at Pearson’s 50th and France
  • Figure out next meeting with neighborhood leaders
  • Betsy met a woman named Kathy Cobb – coming to our winetasting – talk to her about board – new to neighborhood.


Chain of Lake coalition – Todd Wildermuth

Last meeting, 3 people – no real updates – meet once a month – will be info-sharing until something comes up.


Midtown Greenway Coalition – Cher Underwood Forsberg

The kiosk was tagged.  Barb had called Mari and Mari called 311 to report.  Betsy said, if don’t get a call back in a week, call her and she will get on it.

Towing if people park in WFM lot and ride bikes – have been warning people.  $27 to park whole year in the pay lots.


Twin Cities Marathon

  • 25th anniversary
  • They will send out a party race kit, neighborhoods can compete with each other for best party, money will be awarded
  • For volunteer opportunities, contact mtcmarathon.org
  • TCM mascot and trinkets are available for festivals, contact marathon office


Safety strategy

  • Betsy said that the City pays for graffiti on public locations.  Homes and businesses are responsible for graffiti on private locations.
  • Ahndi will check into paint color to replace graffiti on kiosk.
  • Greg will talk to Jennifer at the City to get info on graffiti-resistant products


West Calhoun Community Garden Fundraiser

  • Please note this event was cancelled due to expense of wine and slow ticket sales
  • Thursday, July 20, 6:30-8:30pm, Whole Foods Market patio
  • All proceeds will benefit the garden at the Midtown Greenway Access Point
  • Michael Hauser is the flamenco guitarist ($150 for 2 hours)


Density and Development Guidelines

  • See what the Minneapolis Plan has to say about the issue of density and the impact on traffic
  • Also review the South Lyndale master plan (link on Ward 13 website)
  • Add a separate section about the process WCNC wants developers to follow
  • Add a statement that for multi-family units, the neighborhood would like more input with the developer
  • There is a dilemma with the City’s plan that growth needs to take place along commercial and traffic corridors to preserve the neighborhoods.  This impacts West Calhoun because it encompasses two major corridors, Excelsior Blvd. and Lake St.
  • Ask developers to partner with neighborhood in advocating for mass transit
  • Break the document into sections
  • Emphasize that there are very different areas within West Calhoun:  growth corridors, residential areas, property fronting Parkway, commercial property, office property, single family and multi-family, golf course, greenspace
  • Break document into use categories
  • Question was asked, “What is the physical limit?  How much density can infrastructure support?”
  • An argument was made that although there are commercial and traffic corridors in the neighborhood, it is unique because of the environmental amenities.  WCNC should preserve the lakes and the character of the area due to the unique aspects of the area.
  • Another question: “Are there places we might want to take a stand?  Where are limits we want to set?”
  • Issues such as pollution – imposing on the environmental health of the lakes; recreational use and enjoyment – there is a limit for enjoyment of users.  It is a regional recreational destination.
  • Recognize that the neighborhood is a “hotspot” for development.  There is a collective impact produced by individual developments.
  • How are shading and water issues addressed in the zoning code and Minneapolis Plan?
  • Should we overlap these issues in our document?  Todd & Ahndi arrange to meet with area planner and invite her to Sept. meeting.


Parade of Community Gardens

  • Saturday, August 19, 10am-2pm, 53 gardens on the tour.
  • Board members requested to staff the event
  • Mari will ask Shannon O’Halloran to be present early to answer questions and to write up a description of plants at site
  • Handouts:  map of site, factoids on plants, free seed packets
  • We will ask Chipotle, Noodles, Ben & Jerry’s, other businesses to donate food and drink for that day


Other Business

  • Metro Transit has agreed to let us install one customized shelter at W Calhoun Pkwy & Excelsior Blvd.
  • Can we get some sort of “restaurants here” road sign installed along Greenway?
  • Can something be done about the planting by Jiffy Lube?


Meeting adjourned at 9:05pm


Next meeting will be held Tuesday, August 8, 2006 at 7:00pm in the cooking classroom at Whole Foods Market.  There will be a community vote on safety strategy.