We invite you to join us in urging the Minnesota Department of Transportation, Minneapolis Public Housing Authority, Metropolitan Council, and its partners to publicly commit to improving the current Olson Memorial Highway. Below is an email template you can use to guide your response.
Click here to auto-send an email. This works best on desktop computers and the gmail app. If there are issues with sending or formatting, copy and paste the text below.
Copy/Paste the template below. The sample email along with contact information for project staff and elected officials are listed below.
Contact Information for MnDOT staff, partners, and elected officials:
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I am reaching out about the Olson Memorial Highway in Minneapolis. This highway has a devastating history and continues to harm our North Minneapolis community with pollution, displacement, and dangerous road conditions.
North Minneapolis deserves better. I ask that you attend a public accountability forum in Early 2022, hosted by the Harrison Neighborhood Association and Our Streets Minneapolis. The official date has a not been decided, but I ask that you publicly commit to attending the forum.
These organizations developed a set of recommendations that provide a better future for our communities. These recommendations center on immediate street improvements and long-term investment in the Northside community:
Phase 1: Immediate Improvements to the Olson Memorial Highway Corridor
- Transformation of Olson Memorial Highway to include all of the following treatments between Upton and Lyndale:
- Restripe the roadway to the following configuration in each direction: 6' bike lane, 11' dedicated bus lane, 11' general purpose lane, 11' general purpose lane with dedicated left turn lanes where adequate right-of-way exists.
- Lower the posted speed limit to 25 mph
- Improve lighting for pedestrians
- Mark crosswalks at all intersections and mid-block crossings
- Add leading pedestrian intervals and adjust walk signal timing to everyone, including people who are mobility impaired and parents with small children, have adequate time to cross the street.
- Use visual indicators, including artist designed crosswalks, to mark pedestrian crossings
- Use paint and bollards to add pedestrian bump outs on cross streets
- Reconstruction of Olson Memorial Highway into a restored 6th Avenue N boulevard and commercial corridor. The reconstructed street should feature the following elements: One general traffic lane in each direction with dedicated left turn lanes where appropriate, a transit way featuring full-time dedicated bus lanes, protected bikeways, and wide sidewalks to accommodate street facing retail.
- Put the remaining right-of-way in the publicly held land trust. This land will be used to rebuild a walkable 6th Avenue North commercial corridor.
- The creation of training programs for community members to be hired during the transformation, reconstruction and development phases of the highway
- The creation of an incubator program for local neighborhood talent to develop independently owned businesses along the corridor
- Affordable housing units that reflect and meet the needs of the community. This involves restoring deeply affordable units to those who both were displaced out of the community due to the initial route announcement of the Blue Line extension project as well as those who continue to experience housing instability.
There is a clear and urgent need for the described changes. We ask MnDOT and its partners to honor past promises and take immediate action to improve the conditions on Olson Memorial Highway. Please make a public commitment to attending the forum and supporting these changes.
Thank you for your time and consideration.”