Hi folks. Thanks for joining us. Steve and Scott are eager for your questions. Here we go!
Alex makes a good point. There are plenty of attractive areas that need greater density.
I'm thinking about the north end of Lake Calhoun, Lyndale Avenue south of Minnehaha Creek, 44th and France, etc. All those could improve with greater density.
Sorry about the cabs, Edna, but the more important issue you bring up is the perception of high crime downtown.
That's definitely something mayoral candidates, and the chief, have to get a handle on. Curious if our audience thinks news media focuses too much on downtown crime...?
Attracting middle class families are important, but in population terms not as important as in the past. In 1960, nearly half of all households were families with kids. In just a few years it will be down to 20 percent.
Good point, Dave. That's why Target Field was so important.
We need people to experience downtown when it's safe and vibrant.
The Vikings stadium, especially if it's active year-round, should do the same on the other side of downtown.
Brad, I don't think we have to worry about the wealthy dominating this city. If you study our economic profile over the last several the problem is that we're getting poorer. We need middle class taxpayers and wealthier people to share the load.
I've got a thought on that too, Steve.
As I walk through downtown, I see lots of younger workers coming out of apartments and condos.
I obviously don't know what they are paying, but the rents must be competitive.
Gail asks a great question about schools. If I were a candidate for mayor I'd promise to do all I can to make a new school happen downtown.
This would be a school that would give people confidence in staying. I wouldn't care if it were public or charter or whatever. Just something that works.
The "positive" news about downtown Mpls has picked up since the recession ended.
But even the police will admit that the perception of crime is an issue.
Bud makes a good observation. City living is not for everyone.
The success that Denver, Seattle and Portland have had is in convincing a share of suburbanites to consider city living because they've made that choice more attractive.
We're probably getting a little downtown heavy here.
We'll try to get to more questions about neighborhoods.
In our preliminary talks with a few mayoral candidates, they have talked a lot about the neighborhoods.
Lee is right that the city needs growth beyond the downtown core.
Most often the candidates are talking about North Mpls, but we're hearing about other neighborhoods as well.