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Old Posted Sep 12, 2019, 10:26 PM
craigs craigs is offline
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Originally Posted by MplsTodd View Post
As someone who worked in downtown Minneapolis for 20 years, I generally had a love-hate relationship with the skyways. They definitely detract from streetlife. Nicollet Mall has decent pedestrian traffic, but other streets in the core lack activity. But in winter months, you really appreciate the skyway and the volume of usage is amazing. No matter what the weather is like outside, huge crowds of people circulate throughout the downtown core via skyway, patronizing local businesses and restaurants.
In the past ten years, substantial development has occurred around the edges of the downtown core, greatly enlarging the active areas of downtown (North Loop, Mills District, Downtown East, etc...). What had been parking lots and non-descript commercial buildings has densified and been developed with lots of housing, decent amount of office, hotels, restaurants and even retail, especially in the North Loop.
The skyway system's downside (taking people off the streets) is definitely outweighed by the upside: with climate control and security, there is a sufficiently large customer base to reliably support a whole slew of downtown businesses.

People in the Twin Cities are not weather wimps, as their four-season bike culture shows, but people--everywhere--tend to avoid going outside in inclement weather when they feel they have a viable alternative. In the case of shops and restaurants, that usually means suburban malls, and M-SP has those, just like everywhere else.

I suspect there would be fewer reliable customers (and thus fewer establishments) downtown without the skyways. Indeed, it's even possible much of what downtown Minneapolis has to offer, from shops and restaurants to office buildings and hotels, might well have been located outside downtown if not for the perks engendered in the skyway system. Being downtown has only been widely appreciated among the general public for the last 10 or 15 years or so. Before then, a lot more people and businesses wanted to be in the suburbs, and it didn't take much convincing. They skyway system offered them a downtown alternative, and still does, which is a big part of why I think it wins the thread.
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Old Posted Sep 12, 2019, 10:43 PM
MPLS_Const_Watch MPLS_Const_Watch is offline
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
those numbers are by MSA, so st. paul's total was included in minneapolis' figure.

here's how it breaks down for the twin cities:

183,441 total in the MSA

141,639 in Minneapolis

37,304 in St. Paul

4,498 in Brooklyn Park
Ahh, this makes sense. Thanks for the info.

Excited to see where these numbers are after 2020.
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Old Posted Sep 17, 2019, 6:49 PM
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Steely Dan Steely Dan is offline
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Originally Posted by MPLS_Const_Watch View Post

Excited to see where these numbers are after 2020.
yeah, we're now 9 years removed from those numbers, and with minneapolis' continued urban development, i won't be shocked if more of its census tracts have crossed the 10,000 ppsm threshold by the time the 2020 census is done next year.

it would almost be impossible for that 2010 figure to not have increased, perhaps significantly.
He has to go.

Last edited by Steely Dan; Sep 17, 2019 at 7:00 PM.
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Old Posted Sep 27, 2019, 4:23 PM
mrnyc mrnyc is offline
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Originally Posted by MPLS_Const_Watch View Post
Interesting list. I'm curious about St. Paul's numbers and the combined Minneapolis-St. Paul total.

This is not correct. The skyway system is owned and managed by the individual property owners. The Downtown Improvement District (a nonprofit) works to coordinate hours and wayfinding, etc. but the skyways are all under direct control of the properties they run through. In St. Paul, I'm not sure exactly how they do it legally, whether its part of conditions attached to encroachment permits or easements or what, but the city retains control over hours and certain skyway rules. That's why you'll find later and more uniform hours in the St. Paul skyway.

A lot of people hate on the skyway system here pretty hard. I'm neutral to lukewarmly supportive of it. It is a tremendous boon to the city in the winter, but obviously has a negative impact on street life. It's hard to say for sure, but I would guess that the skyway has probably had a big impact on retaining downtown jobs. It's definitely a significant amenity for office workers.
interesting. i wondered about that. and i wondered what locals thought of the skyways. as a casual visitor i am 100% all for it. i see the streetlife as plenty busy -- where it should be -- and the skyway as an awesome compliment for msp. and that includes visits in the dead of winter and height of summer. i am glad what there was of it was torn out in cincinnati, it didnt work there, but it works very well up north with you guys. and its a unique signature for the city, just like underground montreal is for them.
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Old Posted Oct 11, 2019, 6:29 PM
mrnyc mrnyc is offline
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right on time -- if you want to see more examples of typical cleveland apartments of the past century's boomtown years as they are today, that is to say barely hanging on, there is an excellent thread of the east side hough neighborhood up on uo -- check it out

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Old Posted Oct 11, 2019, 6:37 PM
Obadno Obadno is online now
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Probably Cleveland, Some really historic parts of most Midwestern cities they are just going to be small and surrounded by non-urban neighborhoods.

Detroit before it collapsed.
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Old Posted Oct 13, 2019, 5:00 AM
aquablue aquablue is offline
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Chicago, it's the most urban place in the country outside NY.
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Old Posted Oct 13, 2019, 1:14 PM
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dc_denizen dc_denizen is offline
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I really need to visit Detroit and Minneapolis
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Old Posted Oct 13, 2019, 7:16 PM
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jd3189 jd3189 is offline
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Originally Posted by aquablue View Post
Chicago, it's the most urban place in the country outside NY.
The thread title said ( except Chicago)
There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self.
-Aldous Huxley

Continue improving until the end.
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Old Posted Oct 13, 2019, 7:52 PM
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Segun Segun is offline
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I remember walking around Minneapolis thinking I was in Somalia.

What quintessential Midwest experience are we referring to?
Chicago - The City of Sisterly Hate. The city where the "Who is this b**ch?!" mentality keeps politics from progressing.

Check out my music video "Segun", filmed on the Streets of Rio - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTWN0RxMKgQ
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