Monthly Archives: January 2016

LRT Municipal Consent

Here is a great article by Council Member Kolb on Municipal Consent.  He details the timeline and general process, and our options.  We are currently working on securing the Bass Lake Road pedestrian crossing over Hwy 81, with the pedestrian bridge as a favored option.  Joe Bowen of the Sun Post wrote this article summarizing the general feeling on this issue.  New designs of the pedestrian bridge were presented to the Council during the January 25th work session.  Residents also participated in the LRT Station Design workshop that evening.  From the input I have received, I understand that the pedestrian bridge would be a welcome solution to the already snarled intersection.  Having the bridge as a viable option is an essential sticking point for me- our residents must have a full range of choices.  The next step in the Municipal Consent process is the Open House and Public Hearing on February 2nd.  The Open House will be held from 5:30-7:00pm in the Community Room at City Hall.  The Public Hearing takes places in the Council Chambers during the 7pm meeting.  It is very important for us to hear your opinion on the LRT project, and I hope many of you can make it.  I am currently on maternity leave, so I will be watching the meeting from home.  Your phone calls and emails are welcome, however!  Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions and concerns.

Recap of January 19th Council Meeting

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Personal Update

My baby boy, Emanuel David, was born on January 17th.  We are both healthy and recovering well.  I can't wait for everyone to meet him!  For now, we are staying put at home, but I anticipate returning to full time Council work in the next two or three weeks.  Here he is just two days old. Emanuel2

I’ve been offline for a while, and need to catch up on some current issues of importance to Section 2.  For an excellent December overview, which covers the Budget and Utility Rates, please read Council Member Kolb's update here.  Take a look at that stack of reading material!  On to my update:

LRT Municipal Consent

We are in the Municipal Consent stage of the LRT project. The Blue Line Open House on Thursday, January 14th, 5:30-7pm, at the Crystal City Hall Community Room. The preliminary design plans of the project will be presented, and community input taken. The City Council will also hold a Public Hearing on February 2, 7:00pm, City Hall, Council Chambers.

Station Area Planning

Community members have been actively participating in the Station Area Planning phase of the project. One of the issues has been the use, and potential improvement, of Becker Park. Residents have singled out Becker Park as one of our most important public assets. The park is in need of updates, and there is significant excitement about the possibilities. Residents and the Council agree that Becker Parks should remain its current size; we now need careful planning and community input to bring out the best in this space.  Another issue is the pedestrian crossing over Hwy 81.  The current design and traffic conditions of the 81 and Bass Lake Road intersection make it nearly impossible for pedestrians to cross safely.  There are several options to improve this intersection and make it more user friendly, including building a pedestrian overpass. Click here to learn more about Municipal Consent and Station Area Planning.

Freight Rail Quiet Zones

City Staff are officially researching the establishment of Quiet Zones at the Canadian Pacific intersections at Douglas Drive and West Broadway. Staff is working directly with SRF (the city's quiet zone consultant), and representatives from Hennepin County, MnDOT-Rail, Federal Railroad Administration, and Canadian Pacific railroad. A meeting was recently held on the actual rail crossings to review the options. This issue will be discussed in more detail at a work session in approximately one to two months.

New Tenant at the Crystal Shopping Center

Robbinsdale School District plans to open an educational facility at the Crystal Shopping Center. This facility will be geared towards children with disabilities and adult learners. The leased space will be 42,000 square feet in the south two- thirds of the west building. Most of the space is currently vacant, with the Dollar Tree and Pro Nails Salon moving to another unit within the Shopping Center. Both the Council and Paster Properties feel that this is a positive step for the area- expanding the Shopping Center’s use by serving the community, and bringing in more consumers for established businesses. The proposed opening date for the school is July 2016.

City Code Review Task Force

City Code Review Task Force is making great progress! This Sun Post article gives a good overview of their work.

Looking for Commissioners

We are recruiting volunteers for our Commissions! Click here for more information.

Personal Update

I am due to have my third baby at the end of January, and will be on a semi-official maternity leave for approximately 6 weeks. In the meantime, I will be watching the council meetings and listening to the work sessions. My plan is to come back as soon as possible, with baby in tow.

A detailed summary of each Council Meeting is now available in this handy format:

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Upcoming Community Events

Light of Crystal Half Way Happy Hour

Friday, January 15th, 5:30pm, Buffalo Wild Wings

Facebook Event Page

Quad Community Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Bowling Fundraiser

Fundraiser to benefit our local Service Members and Veterans.

Sunday, January 31

Sign up at Doyle's Bowling & Lounge begins at 10:30 a.m.
Bowling begins at 11:00 a.m.
$20/participant
(includes 3 games, shoes & lunch)