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Minneapolis Pedestrian Advisory Committee Meeting

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Present: Barbara Olson, Peter Vader, Neal Baxter, Donna Hemp, Julia Curran, Tamir Ali Mohamud, Abigail Johnson, Paul St. Martin, Christian Huelsman, Aaron Berger, Julia Tabbut; Matthew Dyrdahl, Steve Mahowald, Emily Kettell, Julie Danzl, Rattana Sengsoulichanh, Sarah Stewart, Heidi Schallberg, Millicent Flowers; Luís Dax, pedestrian

Resolutions

#1--46th Street Pedestrian Improvement Project 

The Pedestrian Advisory Committee supports the 46th Street Pedestrian Improvement project. We ask Hennepin County to coordinate with Minneapolis traffic operations to include pedestrian signal timing in this project, including automatic recall and leading pedestrian intervals. We request crosswalks at all four legs of the two intersections on the I-35W bridge, particularly because it is a major transit stop. We support the RRFB and street lighting improvements at Oakland Ave and support including six beacons. We ask for more the four feet of pedestrian clear space at Oakland Ave.

#2--Pedestrian Crosswalks on MnDOT Bridges

It has recently come to the Pedestrian Advisory Committee’s attention that MnDOT does not provide pedestrian crosswalks on all legs of intersections on bridges. This practice is not consistent with the Minneapolis Complete Streets Policy, adds an unnecessary restriction for pedestrian movements, and can result in pedestrians needing to wait an extra cycle or encourage people to cross illegally. The PAC strongly recommends that all legs of signalized intersections in Minneapolis, regardless of ownership, should be fully ADA accessible marked crosswalks. 

#3--Minneapolis Scooter Share 

The Pedestrian Advisory Committee supports the Minneapolis scooter share 2019 extended pilot and its expanded equity and distribution goals. Concerning safety, we have reservations related to equitable enforcement and recommend exploring options other than individual enforcement. 

 

Chair Julia Tabbut called the meeting to order at 4:02 PM and asked all present to introduce themselves.

Approval of the Minutes

Barb moved to approve the February minutes; Donna seconded. Approved.

Infrastructure & Engineering Subcommittee Report—Aaron Berger

We looked at one project, a pedestrian improvement project along 46th Street from Garfield to 18th Avenue South. Improving pedestrian ramps is the focus here, and a few intersections will get enhanced signals and countdown timers, too. The intersections of Grand and Chicago Avenues are not included, as they are scheduled for big work later. Lighting is not within the scope of this project. Also not included were pedestrian crosswalks on the inside legs of the I-35W junction. Aaron read a resolution (#1 above); Barb seconded. Approved.

Here Julia Curran offered the PAC slides of intersections that have missing crosswalks. Some of these involve freeways, some do not. Examples include: Main St. SE, 1st St. & Hennepin, Vineland Place between Hennepin & Lyndale.

Steve: Is there a rationale for this omission?

MD: the engineers feel a crosswalk is unnecessary, as pedestrians shouldn't be encouraged to walk the connecting segment. 

Paul: there were concerns in St. Paul about double left turns, where it would be safer for pedestrians to avoid the crossing.

MD: and if we add a protected pedestrian interval here, we prolong the cycle even more. 

Abigail: but the pedestrian is the driver's only obstacle, as no cars are in the way of the left turn.

Christian read resolution #2 above; Neal seconded. Approved.

Programs & Policies Subcommittee Report—Peter Vader

First, we heard Josh Johnson's update on scooter rentals. He offered a lot of interesting data, which I can summarize as: the scooters saw a lot of use, with very few complaints. The City will encourage the vendors to distribute the scooters more widely this year. 

Julia Tabbut read a resolution (#3 above); Neal seconded. Approved.

Next, we continued to work on our list of work agendas, and we also discussed the PAC's need for a working relationship with the police department.

Lastly, we talked about upcoming PAC vacancies, and how to fill them. The application for a seat on the PAC is due on April 19. This year we have 8 seats to fill, though some members will, no doubt, want to continue to serve. 

Curran: we'd like to share member experiences with possible applicants. If you're interested, let me know.

Detours during the Final Four Games—Matthew Dyrdahl

Unlike the Super Bowl, the Final Four is not expected to disrupt pedestrian traffic significantly. Nicollet Mall will remain open for pedestrians, The Commons will have limited access for 1 day; the streets immediately adjacent to the stadium will pose the main impediment to pedestrians. 

Abigail: I noted that the official literature advises “Walk to every event!”. 

Annual Report Recap—Matthew Dyrdahl

The report to the City Council's Transportation & Public Works Committee went well. Of special interest was a comment by CM Andrew Johnson. He's chair of the Intergovernmental Relations Committee, and suggested that the PAC could help him move the County and State toward greater cooperation with the City. We will explore what this offer might mean this year.

 

Announcements

Luis: Duluth is promoting walking. I heard a report on MPR about their Walk Duluth program.

Sarah: I have a survey on health concerns for everyone to fill out.

Steve: 8th Street bus traffic will move to 6th Street on Saturday.

Chris H: watch for the April 6 alley bike tour in Phillips and the Wedge.

 

Neal moved to adjourn; Barb seconded. Approved, and adjourned at 5:02 PM.

 

Last updated May 2, 2019

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