Posts Tagged ‘Northeast Minneapolis biking’
Tuesday, August 14th, 2012
The following is a post written by Hilary Reeves, communications director, Bike Walk Twin Cities, that originally ran in the Southwest Journal.
If you’d like to get a better idea of a truly avid bicycle-riding community, jetting off to Amsterdam or Copenhagen will give you the best picture. But, if your travel is local this summer, certain pockets of Minneapolis show very strong rates of bicycling to work. One such pocket is Northeast Minneapolis.
Northeast Minneapolis – a haven for bicycling? You mean the traditionally working class community originally settled by Eastern European immigrants and now home to a variety of new immigrants from Africa and Latin America, as well as lots of people who’ve moved in from across the region?
Yes, that’s the one!
As part of overall efforts to raise awareness of new options for bicycling and walking, Bike Walk Twin Cities (a program of Transit for Livable Communities) has conducted surveys of residents at the neighborhood level. The intent is to find out more about transportation habits and attitudes as well as rates of bicycling and walking. Rainbow Research, a Minneapolis firm, conducted a random-sample survey of 135 Northeast Minneapolis residents this spring.
The early findings show that 8.1 percent of the survey respondents most often use a bicycle to get to work or school. Though admittedly a small sample, that rate of bicycle commuting is double the city’s overall current rate of 4 percent bicycle commuters (according to the American Community Survey), and already ahead of the city’s goal of 7 percent bike commuters by 2014. Kudos Northeast Minneapolis!
What other stats accompany the high rate of bicycling in the sample?
Northeast residents are young! Nearly half of the Northeast survey respondents are 34 years old or younger. Ten percent were ages 18 to 24, and another 38 percent were ages 24 to 34. These demographics perhaps reflect how Northeast has changed in recent years. Many of the area’s newest residents are looking to take advantage of the area’s relatively affordable housing, unique urban culture, and ready proximity to downtown Minneapolis, Saint Paul, and the University of Minnesota.
Clearly, residents of Northeast are thinking about their transportation choices. When survey respondents were asked if they had thought about using their bikes to get to work, school, stores, or other destinations, more than they already do, 72 percent said yes.
These Northeast residents seem to be picking up on the fact that nearly half of the places people go are less than three miles away, and therefore perfect for bicycling or walking. Using the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2010 Local Employment Dynamics data, we know that about 15 to 20 percent of Northeast residents work in downtown zip codes – just a short trip away from Northeast. The 8 percent of survey respondents who regularly bike to work have discovered how easy bike commuting can be!
The survey also suggests that many Northeast residents are discovering the savings that can come from bicycling or walking. When asked about the reasons they bike, 27.8 percent of respondents cited the cost of gas – this was the top score among those who say they bike instead of going by motor vehicle.
Shedding a single car can save you up to $8,000 per year, on average, according to the American Automobile Association. And certainly, people today are looking for ways to save money.
Fortunately, access to quality bicycling routes in Northeast is good – and growing. For example, last fall, two new bicycle boulevards opened in Northeast, providing a higher-quality ride experience to local residents. The new 5th St. N.E. and S.E. bike boulevard extends from 26th Ave. N.E. southward to Dinkytown, near the University of Minnesota. The route includes a bicycle-detection stop light at the intersection of 5th St. with Hennepin and Central Aves. It also includes the state’s first bicycle traffic signal at the Broadway Ave. crossing.
A new west-to-east bike boulevard in Northeast extends from Marshall St. N.E. to New Brighton Blvd., with nearby connections to the Quarry shopping center and the Minneapolis Diagonal Trail. The route features many speed bumps and other traffic-calming elements, making for a more relaxing ride for bicyclists. There also are new off-street bicycle trails on 18th Ave. N.E.
Even if you’re not a Northeast resident, you’re welcome to try out these newer bike routes, as well as many other bicycling amenities in the area. One thing is for sure: as a bicyclist in Northeast, you are certain to have plenty of company!
Monday, May 7th, 2012
Last month, we started a new series on the Bike Walk Stories blog—Featured Routes. In March, we focused on the bike lanes along Blaisdell and 1st Avenues in south Minneapolis. Today, we’d like to take a closer look at two bike boulevards that opened in Northeast last fall.
The 5th St. and 22nd Ave. bicycle boulevards in northeast Minneapolis provide good north-south and east-west routes through a part of town that previously lacked good facilities. The 5th street route is mostly north-south, going from Marcy Holmes and St. Anthony East neighborhoods to the Logan Park and Holland neighborhoods. At NE 26th Street, the route follows the alleyway behind apartments facing University and briefly uses the sidewalk to reach a bike trail to St Anthony Parkway on the northern border of Minneapolis. The 22nd Ave. route is east-west. It cuts across the Bottineau, Holland and Windom Park neighborhoods, connecting Marshall Avenue near the Mississippi River to the Quarry and the Diagonal Trail to the east. Note: Another north-south route, the Presidents Bicycle Boulevard, is planned for the east side of Northeast, running parallel to Central Avenue.
Bicycle boulevards. Minneapolis has installed several bicycle boulevards in the last couple of years. The general idea with bicycle boulevards is to add traffic-calming and safety features to quiet residential streets to make them better for bicycling and walking. Studies of bicycle boulevards in other cities have shown that women prefer them to riding on busy streets with bike lanes. In fact, bicycle boulevards often run parallel to commercial streets. In the case of Northeast, the 5th Street bicycle boulevard runs parallel to University Ave. The 5th street route also passes through the Northeast business district (at Hennepin & Central) and crosses the 13th and 26th Avenue business districts.
Bike signal. The region’s first bike traffic signal at 5th St. and Broadway Ave. NE helps bicyclists cross one of the busier roads in the area. There also are new curb bump outs and crossing signals for people walking.
Bicycle detection stop light. For cyclists taking 5th St. north through the commercial district of Northeast, there is a bicycle detection signal at the intersection of 5th and Central/Hennepin, activated by placing your bike tire on the bike symbol.
Traffic circles. Mini, or “residential”, traffic circles replace stop signs at several intersections in Northeast Minneapolis. Highly-visible, traffic circles make it possible for bikes to proceed without coming to a full stop and also make sure cars slow down while moving through the neighborhood.
Nice Ride stations. There are seven Nice Ride stations close to the 5th St. and 22nd Ave. bike boulevards—just in case you forgot your bike (or don’t own one):
* Central & 20th (between 18th & Lowry
* Logan Park (Broadway & Monroe)
* University & 12th (close to 13th Ave biz district)
* Marshall Ave. & 8th (near Elsie’s & the Yacht Club)
* Hennepin Ave. & Central Ave. (near Whiteys)
* University Ave. & Bank St. (across from Lunds, near Surdyks)
* 100 Main Street (near Saint Anthony Main)
Bike parking. New bike racks have been added at several locations in Northeast Minneapolis, including those along 22nd Ave. at Mill City Cafe, St. John’s Byzantine Church, Dean’s Circle Grocery, Jackson Square Park, and the Firefighters Hall & Museum. Along 5th St., there are new bike racks at Conga Latin Bistro, St. Mary’s Church, and near apartment buildings.
Connects to the University of Minnesota. The 5th St. bike boulevard also connects with the bike lanes along 5th St. SE, which lead to the University of Minnesota campus at Dinkytown via a bicycling/pedestrian bridge over 35W.
Landmarks and notable businesses along routes
The northeast Minneapolis area is home to many wonderful restaurants, watering holes, churches and other landmarks, including:
Gardens of Salonica (5th & 1st)
Red Stag Supper Club (5th & 1st)
Grumpy’s (4th & 22nd—a block off 5th & 22nd)
Hennepin Country Library (22nd & Central)
Northeast Social (4th & 13th—a block off 5th)
The Ritz Theater (4th & 13th—a block off 5th)
Mayslacks (4th & 15th—a block off 5th)
Edison High School (22nd & Monroe)
St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral (5th & 17th)
Northeast Farmer’s Market (2nd & 7th)
Jackson Square Park (22nd & NE Jackson St.)
Windom Park (Johnson St. & 23rd—a block off 22nd)
St. Anthony Park (5th & 3rd)
Tags: Bike Walk Move, Bike Walk Twin Cities, Nice Ride Minnesota, Nice Ride MN, northeast Minneapolis bike boulevards, northeast Minneapolis bike lanes, northeast Minneapolis bike routes, Northeast Minneapolis biking
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Tuesday, May 1st, 2012
Name: Robin Sauerwein
Neighborhood: Audubon Park, Northeast Minneapolis
Workplace: Northrup Auditorium, University of Minnesota
Robin Sauerwein walks the walk…and buses the bus, and bikes the bike. Every day. Robin uses a combination of walking and MetroTransit buses to get to her job at the University of Minnesota’s Northrup Auditorium. On especially nice days, she rides her bicycle to work. Here’s a bit more about her routine and her advice for others who might be considering bicycling, walking and taking the bus more often.
How did you start walking to work?
My family used to own two cars. When the motor in one of them went in September, we decided not to replace it. Now, my husband has a truck for business, and I walk and take the bus to work. I didn’t have a car until I was in my 20s, so walking is natural to me.
Why did you make that choice?
I’d just rather be moving. I work in an office all day, so it feels good to be outside and moving. It gets me to think more clearly. I write, so a lot of poems and writing come to me while I’m walking. Especially now during the spring, I get to see the plants and hear the birds – those little things that you don’t always notice in a vehicle. I feel more in control of my own time; I’m not frustrated by traffic. I feel so energized and relaxed when I get home at the end of the day. I consider myself really lucky.
How far is your commute to the University of Minnesota?
It’s about four miles each way. On average, I walk about a mile each way to get to the bus. If it’s really nice, I’ll bike the whole way.
What routes do you use to get to work?
If I’m walking, I’ll take the residential streets in my neighborhood to University Avenue and walk down that to catch the bus. When I bike, I go through Dinkytown to get to University Avenue, and then I’ll bike through campus to get to Northrup Auditorium. It’s a beautiful ride through campus.
What are your limits for walking or biking to work?
If it’s really slippery out (in the winter) I’ll take the bus, but otherwise I know how to dress for the weather – lots of layers and long underwear. If it snows, I wear boots. It’s a great workout to walk in the snow.
What’s your advice to others who want to incorporate more walking and biking into their lives?
Really look at the way you’re spending your time. You may not need your car as much as you think you do. If it’s only a mile to the store, what if you walked instead of taking your car? Try walking or biking on those short trips to the store, library, bakery, and so on. Incorporate it into your current lifestyle.
Tags: Minneapolis biking, Minneapolis walking, Northeast Minneapolis biking, Northeast Minneapolis walking, Robin Sauerwein, walking to Northrup Auditorim, walking to the U of M
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The following is a post written by Hilary Reeves, communications director, Bike Walk Twin Cities, that originally ran in the Downtown Journal. Now that Nice Ride bikes are tucked away for the winter, consider using the bus for your quick trips to lunch, meetings, doctor’s appointments, or shopping. Using Metro Transit is an ideal way
The following is a post written by Bri Whitcraft, Special Projects Coordinator, Bike Walk Twin Cities. It all started with a video as inspiration and a Tweet as declaration. (My mom thought it was a joke.) Map & Route From my home in South Minneapolis, I biked to St. Paul to borrow the trailer from
The following is a post written by Hilary Reeves, communications director, Bike Walk Twin Cities, that originally ran in the Southwest Journal. Practical, affordable and surprisingly rewarding, winter bicycling has become increasingly popular in Minneapolis, recently named one of the top five cities in the nation for winter bicycle commuting by MetaEfficient. That’s amazing when