At 4pm on Wednesday, October 22, the Minneapolis Bicycle Advisory Committee held it's monthly meeting.
The Board welcomed new member Sargent Tom Campbell from the Minneapolis Police Department’s First Precinct. Sgt. Campbell will be the MPD’s permanent represent on the committee.
5E Subcommittee: Motion Passed to Recommend City Funding for 2015 Minneapolis Bike Week
5E subcommittee chairman, Roy Hallanger provided a summary of the items discussed during the last subcommittee meeting. To briefly summarize some key items:
Sgt. Keith Rowland provided a run-down of the structure and function of the Minneapolis Park Police.
The Park Police unit is made up of MPD officers, some of whom are also sworn park officers. They help keep the parks safe by combatting low level crime and educating and interacting with the community through extensive outreach efforts at local recreation centers.
Forrest Hardy presented the new Minneapolis Walking Routes for Youth Map. It is available now, in English, Spanish, Hmong and Somali. There is also FREE app that lets you browse the map from your actual geographical location.
Nick Olson reported that new records were set during year’s Minneapolis Bike Week. Over 10,000 participants attended over 150 events. The events were organized in collaboration with 74 business partners, including 32 schools. Staffing and infrastructure was provided by the Minneapolis Bicylcle Coalition (ourstreetsmpls.org).No date has yet been set for the 2015 Minneapolis bike week, but it will probably take place early in May. Anyone interested in helping to organize it should contact Nick.Olson@MinneapolisMN.gov.
Roy raised a motion to recommend that the City fund the 2015 Bike Week. A specific amount was not mentioned. The motion passed with one abstention.
There was some discussion around whether the City would continue to fund this event in the long term since other cities with successful Bike Weeks generally obtained funding from non-government sources. This discussion was tabled for a later date.
Engineering Subcommittee: Community Comments on the New Trail Signage Solicited Through November 14
Engineering subcommittee chairman, Ciara Schlichting provided a summary of the items discussed during the last subcommittee meeting. To briefly summarize some key items:
The subcommittee have created a welcome packet to help community members submit their ideas for projects more successfully. As volunteers, tmembers have a limited amount of time they can spend on each project, so the welcome packet will help people organize and submit their ideas ahead of time, thus helping to keep the meetings within the 2 hour limit.
The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) have published a set of draft standards as part of their Trails Standard Development - Marking and Signage project.The MPRB is proactively soliciting feedback from the community by posting an online survey which includes details photographs and images of the proposed new designs for signage and ideas for improving safety in congested areas. The deadline for submitting comments is November 14.
Discussions around alternative options for bike routes, both on and off Penn Avenue are ongoing as part of the Penn Ave N Community Works project. Members of the community are invited to share ideas to help make Penn Avenue a better place at three community open houses. Light refreshments and childcare will be provided. Up to date information is available on the Penn Avenue Community Works website.
The open houses will take place on:
Saturday, November 8, 2014, from 10 a.m. to 12 noon. Location to be announced.
Thursday, November 13, 2014, from 6 to 8 p.m in the Harrison Recreation Center (Multipurpose Room), at 503 Irving Ave N, Minneapolis
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 from 1 to 3 p.m. Location to be announced.
The November Engineering Subcommittee meeting will take place on Tuesday, November 18 — one day earlier than usual due to the clash with Veterans Day.
Agency Overview: Downtown Minneapolis TMO (a.k.a. Commuter Connection)
Dan MacLaughlin, Executive Director of the Downtown Minneapolis Transportation Management Organization (TMO) gave a short presentation on the role and impact of his organization within the community.
As part of its mandate to help the community find healthy alternate options for commuting, the TMO organizes and runs a variety of biking, carpooling, walking and mass transit programs including Zap Twin Cities, Metro (bus) Passes and Carpool Concierge.
Dan explained that TMO initiatives are tied to the Clean Air Act which requires regions approaching or exceeding particular levels of air pollution to be put within a non-attainment area. The Twin Cities are within a non-attainment area.
There are a number of TMOs focussing on specific regions within the metro area. Each relies of voluntary participation and local partnerships in order to work within the local culture to create sustainable changes. The downtown TMO is Commuter Connection.
Commuter Connection was formed in 1991, and has a staff of 4. It achieves maximum impact through partnerships within the business community, and has a dedicated business community liaison, Shawn Carriere.
You can find Commuter Connection in the skyway at 220 South 6th Street, Suite 230 or online at commuter-connection.org.
Future Full BAC Committee Meetings
BAC 5E meets on the 4th Wednesday of the month in Minneapolis City Hall, room 333, from 4:00 - 6:00 pm.
The next Full BAC Committee meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, November 19th. All BAC Meetings are open to the public.
The image used in this article was copied from the Penn Avenue Commnity Works website.