December 9, 2014 Minutes

West Calhoun Neighborhood Council Meeting Minutes
December 9, 2014 – 6:00 p.m., The Bakken Museum, 3537 Zenith Ave. S.

Board Members:  Allan Campbell, Kathy Cobb, Ian Kees, Richard Logan, Haydee Peterson, John Abraham-Watne.  Staff:  Rhea Sullivan.  Also present: Rodgers Adams, Mary Altman, Carolyn Bell, Edwin Bell, Ann Burk, Lesley Lydell, Emily Ziring.

Treasurer’s Report:  John Abraham-Watne reported no activity in the NRP account.  The balance is $607.93. The NCEC balance is $13,625.90.   

Secretary’s Report:  The minutes of the November 11 meeting were approved as read.

40th and France Land Update:  Lesley Lydell from the Linden Hills Neighborhood Council (LHiNC) reported that there is a parcel of land at 40th and France, which adjoins Minikahda Vista Park, that is located in St. Louis Park and Edina, that the City of Minneapolis owns.  The land was put up for sale by the Mayor of Minneapolis.  In a September 1 article, it was explained that the land could be sold to a private entity if neither the City of St. Louis Park nor the City of Edina buy it.  After the article came out a group was formed.  The goal of the group is to keep the land (which has been a park) as natural as possible. There is concern about potential development and concern about storm water management because water from this area flows into Lake Calhoun.  Lesley’s purpose in coming to the meeting was to make us aware of this situation and to ask for our support to keep the land as natural as possible.  Ideally it would be park land.  There has been talk in Edina about dredging this area, which would destroy the park land.  There have been no offers yet on the property.  The cities are making independent appraisals.  The deadline has been extended to December 31.

Council Member’s Report:  Council Member Aide Emily Ziring reported that at the budget mark-up session on December 1, Council Member Palmisano was successful in passing a reduction to the overall tax levy increase (from 2.4% to 2.2%). A final public hearing on the budget will be held on December 10 before the council takes a final vote.

The Southwest LRT Project Office is currently in negotiations with a consultant for the advanced design work (stations and track). City and MPRB are currently in negotiations with a consultant for the Kenilworth landscaping plan. The City and partners are currently working on determining who should take the lead in hiring a consultant to begin the area-wide traffic study that will begin in the first quarter of 2015.

Regarding Parking and Snow Removal – Traffic control has been out a lot more.  Many people have been ticketed for parking within 5 feet of a driveway.  Emily asked that we help make people aware of this rule.  The City has hired a contractor to help with snow removal. If a work order is made, the response will happen sooner.  Complaints should be logged on Minneapolis 311.

The Minneapolis Code is being amended to reflect the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air act, which prohibits cigarette use in virtually all indoor public places and indoor places of employment.  E-cigarettes will be included in this prohibition.

Regarding Accessory Dwelling Units, an ordinance has passed the Planning Commission and Zoning and Planning to allow Accessory Dwelling Units to be built on residential property.  The 13th Ward Office has been supportive of this ordinance.

Regarding Airport Noise, Council Member Palmisano has been working to make strides in airport noise.  She has advocated for the MAC to make better use of the Runway Use System.  They aren’t currently complying with it and are sending more planes over SW Minneapolis.

Emily did not have an answer about the reconstitution of the CAC for the SW LRT.  We want to be sure that WCNC is represented on the CAC.

Richard Logan reported that there are six new streetlights on Market Plaza and on the Abbott Chowen loop.

Utility Box Art:  Public Arts Administrator Mary Altman gave the WCNC Board an overview of the process of installing art on utility boxes – either with wraps or by painting a box.  This type of project has been done in two dozen neighborhoods.  Mary reported that wrap life is about 5 years.  The life of a painted box depends on how well it is painted.  There are two ways to go.  You can either do custom wraps or use pre-approved designs.  

For a custom wrap, it is required that an artist be involved.  The artist would help to select the photos and to make the design 3-dimensional.  There are a couple main vendors for printing vinyl wraps – Vomela and Sign Minds. The cost is about $15/square foot or about $700 per box, depending on the size for printing and installation.  Four boxes have been approved for utility box art – 3 are in West Calhoun, 1 is in CIDNA.  David Rhees has also expressed an interest in covering the utility box that is on the Bakken Museum property.

We will need consent forms filled out by adjacent property owners and an encroachment permit ($50) for each box.  It is possible to do a mixture of custom and pre-approved boxes.  For a custom design, we can pick an artist any way we want, but the design has to go through an approval process with the Minneapolis Arts Commission.  The custom design process usually takes at least a year.  We could do a call for artists.  Mary has an e-list we could use.  We must pay a stipend.  It is not specified what that stipend should be.  For example, Kingfield paid $75 for photos for boxes, and paid $2,400 to the person who translated the design into 3-D.  Mary said that it is important to include artistic people in your selection process.  Pre-approved designs have a set schedule – April, July and September.  Mary mentioned that we could consider pursuing a Metropolitan Regional Arts Council grant (MRAC) for designing the boxes.

Committee Updates:

Communications Committee:  The Communications Committee is planning to undertake a website redesign this year.  Haydee Peterson is reviewing other websites.  She feels we need more photographs on our site.  Armatage has a Welcome Packet online and their events get a big billing.  A lot of neighborhoods are promoting the city, too.

A motion was made to spend up to $500 for two banners for The Loppet. The motion carried.

Another Communications Committee initiative for 2015 is to redesign the newsletter and do it quarterly.  The committee would like to print one side of the newsletter in full color on white paper with a full color masthead.  The committee would also like to change the name from the Wavelength to West Calhoun News.  A motion was made to do four newsletters in 2015 and to spend up to $4,000.  The motion carried.  

The Board reviewed the Communications Committee objectives and projects.  A motion was made to approve the committee formation, the objective and the projects.  The motion carried.

SW LRT Committee:  The Board reviewed the SW LRT Committee objective, projects and tasks.  A motion was made to approve the committee formation, the objective, projects and tasks. The motion carried.

Rhea explained the two options for return on the SW LRT survey – which included either using metered envelopes for return or using Business Reply mail.  A motion was made that we use Business Reply Mail and budget up to $1,500 for the survey. The motion carried.  The Board was asked to get any feedback on the survey to Allan as soon as possible.  The goal will be to send the survey out January 15.

Additional Bakken Funding:  The Board discussed increasing the amount that we spend to use the space at The Bakken Museum for our meetings.  A motion was made to increase the amount to $1,000.  The motion carried.

Next meeting:  Our next meeting will be Tuesday, January 13, 2015.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:30 p.m.