Category Archives: Policy problems

Ole Avenue questions persist

Ole Avenue is St. Olaf’s planned residence hall/townhome project: This is an exciting project, mostly. New residence halls and townhomes will bring students back on campus, St. Olaf Avenue will be reinforced as the tree-lined entrance to the campus from … Continue reading

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The tip of the Ice Arena budget iceberg

The voters said “no” to building a new Arena, but the old Arena is still City property, is still operated by the City, is still barely functional, and whether to fix it is still unresolved. But budget season for the City will soon be underway and some choices will need to be made. Continue reading

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ADUs: Reframing the discussion

After what seemed like unanimity and a strong sense of purpose at the Planning Commission, the Council discussion about Accessory Dwelling Units has been dispiriting to watch thus far and the public comments even more so. Since the Council will … Continue reading

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Sidewalks as safe transportation infrastructure

After tripping in the same hole in the sidewalk on Division Street not once but three times in recent weeks, I was relieved to see City workers repairing curbs and repairing trip hazards. Like these:   My current inconvenience and … Continue reading

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Future essential character: Starbucks, planning, and future development

Planning looks ahead to set policy and draft regulations to guide how a town grows. Development works now to get projects approved and built. When the development does not fit the planning, which should prevail? The long-term planning or the … Continue reading

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Tiny Houses need a much larger look

The Northfield Planning Commission took a little look at Tiny Houses back in January, but the city really needs to build tiny houses into the much bigger picture of housing in Northfield. What’s a Tiny House? Tiny Houses are, of … Continue reading

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Back in the (Planning Commission) saddle again

I started blogging (at the suggestion/arm-twisting of civic blogmeister Griff Wigley) when I ran for mayor in 2004. I was the chair of the Planning Commission at the time and while I lost the election, I kept writing until I … Continue reading

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Northfield Community Survey – my real answers

I just completed the Northfield Community Survey and you should, too. The survey is the mechanism by which the Council and city staff collect information from┬áThe Public (boards and commissions having had their own meetings) to inform their strategic planning … Continue reading

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