October 14, 2008 Minutes

West Calhoun Neighborhood Council

DRAFT Minutes:  10/14/2008


Present:   Rosemary Lundell, Mari Taffe, Rhea Sullivan (Co-Coordinator)

Absent:     George Effrem, Barb Stevens, Todd Wildermuth

Guests:    Paul Domholt (MPRB Forestry Division), Betsy Hodges (Ward 13 Council Member)


Administrative Items


Secretary’s Report

  • Due to low turn out, no action was taken.

       Treasurer’s Report

  • No report.


Monthly Updates


Council Member comments

  • Council Member Betsy Hodges reported that there are SW LRT scoping meetings currently being held on October 14 and 23.  She encourages WCNC to comment.  We should have received a scoping booklet in the mail.  Betsy is willing to help us if we need anything.  We have sent a letter to comment on the Transitway.
  • Future of NRP – The City of Minneapolis will form a Neighborhood and Community Relations Department.  The new department will house current community engagement activities and post 2009 NRP.  A Neighborhood and Community Relations Commission will be formed as the governing body to provide guidance to this new department.  The resident-based commission will consist of eight residents selected by neighborhood organizations, five appointed by the City Council, two appointed by the Mayor, and one appointed by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board.  
  • The Ward 13 breakfast is the 3rd Wednesday of the month.  In November, there will be a combined Ward breakfast and budget meeting.


Lakes District Council Update

  • No report.


Midtown Greenway Coalition Update

  • No report.  


Other Business


Paul Domholt – Minneapolis Park Board Forestry Division

Paul brought a tree planting map to show us the existing trees in the neighborhood.  The 34 trees that he proposes planting next Spring (2009) would mainly be along the lake, behind Whole Foods and near Jiffy Lube.  There are also 81 stumps that need to be removed.  


Paul reported that there will be no extra charge for the 2.5” Japanese tree lilacs that will be planted next week on West 32nd Street.


Paul said that the Park Board surveys each fall to determine what trees need to be planted.  He suggested that WCNC could put their money into a pot for up to 3 years to continue to replace trees and remove stumps.  He also recommended that we may want to consider allocating funds for gator bags ($15 each) for the trees along the lake.  Gator bags will allow water to be added quickly, but dispersed slowly.  He also said that people could carry buckets of water from the lake to water the trees.  Newly-planted trees need 20-30 gallons of water every 7-10 days.


Paul could look at adding trees in the park and at the lake.  He said there are not a lot of places for trees remaining on the boulevards.  They generally plant native trees on the lake, like bi-color oak, burr oak, hackberry, Kentucky coffee trees, and seedless cottonwood.  


Paul will draft a Scope of Services (SOS) for $20,000 that says what the MPRB will do, which will include a planting plan, and purchasing trees, planting and watering at least twice and stump removal.  Rhea will forward the SOS to the Board.  WCNC will need to vote on the proposed SOS.  If approved, Alexander Zachary will write the contract.  If we approve the plan now, the MPRB will be able to start stump removal this Fall.  


WCNC should support the successful planting by encouraging watering.  We could use tree tags, publicize it in the newsletter, or put up signs as they have in Linden Hills and Fulton.  We could also considering mulching the trees.  


Rosemary Lundell said that she would be willing to visit apartment buildings about potential tree planting.  She also suggested that we could send a cover letter with the November newsletter to the large apartment buildings about the trees, asking for their help.


November newsletter – We will plan to mail a newsletter in November.  This issue should include:  

  • Recap meeting with MPRB Planner and topics of concern (issue, concern or plan and next steps)
  • Tree planting and stump removal with MPRB
  • Southwest LRT
  • Column from Betsy Hodges re: future of NRP
  • Introduce website
  • Recruit new Board members

Rhea will get a quote from Doug Field, the current owner of Post Net, for printing the newsletter.  Mari asked that we also get quote on letterhead envelopes for mailing (50).


Bridge at Lake Street – Rosemary Lundell mentioned that the bridge across Lake Street is a concern.  It is in poor repair.  The railing needs painting.  With light rail coming in, this could be a gateway to the neighborhood.  We would need to partner with CIDNA on this project.


The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 p.m.


The next WCNC Board meeting will be held Tuesday, November 12, 2008, at 7:00 p.m.  We hope to find a new location, because Whole Foods has become increasingly crowded and noisy.


Respectfully submitted,


Rhea Sullivan

WCNC Co-Coordinator