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Minneapolis Ward 9 City Council Candidates’ Stances on Transit, Biking, Walking, and Rolling

From left to right: Jason Chavez, Yussuf Haji, Mickey Moore

Move Minnesota and Our Streets Minneapolis have teamed up on a questionnaire for 2021 Minneapolis city council candidates to learn about their ideas and vision for the future of transportation in Minneapolis.

Access to quality transit, biking, walking, and rolling play an essential role in tackling climate change and ensuring equitable access to the opportunities and services the people of Minneapolis need to live healthy and fulfilling lives.

This questionnaire is for candidate and voter information only. Participating organizations will not be making endorsements in any Minneapolis city elections in 2021. This questionnaire was sent to all candidates, but those not listed have chosen not to respond.

All candidate responses are listed in alphabetical order last name basis.

The Responses

Question 1

What is your primary mode of transportation? How often do you ride transit?  

Jason Chavez:

Selected the “sometimes” option,

I use the 21 on Lake Street, LTR Greenline, and I use the 14C to visit family in Richfield. I like to
walk and bike on the Midtown Greenway.

Yussef Haji:

Selected the “occasionally” option

Mickey Moore:

Like many people, throughout my life, my primary mode of transportation has changed.  I have been a business owner for almost 30 years, and I purposefully located many of my businesses within walking distance of my home.  As a point of practice, I always locate my stores along major bus routes.  I consider access to mass transit and the use of alternate methods of transit a critical component in the success of any business or society. I also understand the limitations that people face when dealing with a disability,  health issue or lifestyle considerations that affect their transportation options.     

Question 2

Rethinking I-94 & Environmental Justice: Climate change and pollution disproportionately affect Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. Children in North Minneapolis—particularly those closest to I-94 in the 55411 & 55412 zip codes are hospitalized at rates as high as 4x compared to children in other parts of Minneapolis. During the last Minneapolis freeway reconstruction project, the city withdrew municipal consent for the I-35W reconstruction until the Minnesota Department of Transportation and the Metropolitan Council redesigned I-35W with highway Bus Rapid Transit, resulting in the Orange Line I-35W. Currently, the Minnesota Department of Transportation is exploring reconstruction efforts for I-94 going North out of the city; what role, if any, do you see the city playing in rethinking our freeways and addressing environmental injustice and pollution from freeways? Are there specific transportation or transit efforts you would pursue to achieve this?   

Jason Chavez:

The path to environmental and racial justice will not be paved on the freeways. While I think
efforts to center climate and communities in Rethinking I-94 are important and necessary as a
means to protect vulnerable residents and reduce pollution, we must also consider alternative
avenues of transportation that allow us to shift away from a reliance on freeway systems like

Reconstruction efforts are an opportunity to promote equity, and a reconstructed freeway is far better than a broken freeway. But the real solution is for our city to focus on other modes of
transportation that reduce our dependence on freeways. . Rather than attempting to reduce
congestion by spending millions of state and municipal dollars on expanding inefficient highway systems, we need to make serious investments in green mass transit infrastructure. We can decentivize freeway transit by making public transportation fast, affordable, accessible, and reliable.

As we work towards that transition, we must make sure reconstruction efforts on major roadways like I-94 and I-35 are designed and implemented with thoughtful changes made for strengthening accessibility, sustainability, and public health. I will ensure our city accepts consultation from community stakeholders to center the needs and priorities of the communities which freeways have historically torn through and harmed.

There are some situations where a personal vehicle is necessary, and freeways can facilitate
efficient transportation in those circumstances. However, we must make sure our freeway
systems take tangible steps to reduce noise, light, and air pollution.

Yussef Haji:

The city has a critical role in rethinking the ways in which freeways impact communities,
especially communities of color as it concerns environmental justice. One of the ways in which the city can take a role is listening to those who are impacted by pollution and come up with solutions that can reduce pollution. The specific transportation efforts that I would encourage is ride sharing, biking, and increasing busing where there is more demand.

Mickey Moore:

The 9th Ward is one of the few areas in this state with a Green Zone designation.  For many of our 9th Ward residents, the historic and systemic injustice that has resulted in disproportionate rates of asthma and lead poisoning is still an ongoing crisis and tragedy.  Therefore, environmental justice is a crucial priority that I will focus upon and insist we use as a lens through which our city crafts or approves any new policies, guidelines or legislation. This includes both business and infrastructure planning and development.  Parking, bike lanes, park and green space resources, rail travel, and many more facets of our overall development package must always be viewed as potential contributing sources of pollution and therefore, a thorough analysis of the environmental impact or effect on climate change must be closely reviewed.  We must always be willing to involve independent and expert sources to help us make determinations based on real evidence and practical data.  Specifically, the data suggests that the diminishing ridership poses a significant threat to our achievement of any meaningful environmental or climate change related goals.  Therefore, I would put into practice a step-by-step method of increasing ridership by reducing and eliminating fares for all children, students, the elderly and the disabled, people who bring bicycles, and all income qualifying city residents. I would also make sure that all transit included hi-speed internet.  Reducing obstacles and increasing ease of access and enjoyment will bring our ridership up to levels that truly affect our vehicle use, which is the single greatest source of both carbon-based pollution and vehicular accidents.

Question 3

Minneapolis Transportation Action Plan: State and city studies show that we will need to reduce how much people drive (“vehicle miles traveled”) to reach established emissions-reduction goals. Transportation is the #1 source of climate change pollution in Minnesota. The Minneapolis Transportation Action Plan has highlighted changing “mode split” (the shifting of car trips to transit, biking, or walking) as a critical strategy in reaching and measuring VMT reduction and in achieving overall emission reduction goals. The city now has an ambitious “mode split goal” to shift 60% of car trips to biking, walking, and transit by 2030. Despite an increase in bike and pedestrian infrastructure investments, data from the previous decade shows that VMT numbers dropped only 2% between 2007-2016.  What specific transit, biking, and walking policies and investments should the city make, if any, to achieve Transportation Action Plan mode split goals? What new or accelerated interventions, if any, do you see as appropriate for reaching VMT goals by 2050?

Jason Chavez:

The MnDOT goal of reducing Vehicle Miles Traveled by 20% within the next 30 years is a good goal. Similarly, the Minneapolis City goals outlined in the MPLS Streets 2030 plan are good goals. By and large, I believe the set goals are both appropriate and attainable. But we have to do the work to make sure that we actually attain them. To set our city on a trajectory capable of achieving these mode split and VMT targets, we have to move away from a car-first transportation model. In 2019, car travel (combining solo rider and multi-rider trips) comprised nearly 70% of all Minneapolis transit trips. That is not the fault of community members; rather, it is the result of government investments disproportionately favoring car-centric infrastructure. I will collaborate with local, state, and federal leaders as well as relevant agencies to ensure our transportation funding is tuned towards supporting pedestrians, cyclists, and transit riders. There is a multitude of small-scale programs I will support in addition to the topline budgetary considerations, such as grants for local bike shops and cultural programs that encourage communities of color to use bicycle transit when possible. My vision for transit infrastructure in Minneapolis is one that centers pedestrians, transit riders, and bikers rather than focusing exclusively on automobile infrastructure.

Yussef Haji:

One of the policies that can be adapted to achieve Transportation Action Plan mode split goals is encouraging public safety. Perhaps more people would be willing to walk or bike if they felt safe to do so. Otherwise, providing walking or biking incentives for those commuting to work can also be a policy that helps to decrease car trips.

Mickey Moore:

I know I just made several points regarding the lowering of fares and efforts to increase mass transit ridership in the last question, but I cannot stress highly enough that increasing transit ridership must be a priority if we’re going to accomplish our stated goals. So, we need all of our buses and trains, on every line, to consistently be packed full.  Not just during “peak-hours” but always.  Everything we do must be designed to achieve that from the placement of new lines to the scheduling of buses, including the institution of computer guided “smart-scheduling”.  Separately I believe there are lots of innovative and unexplored options regarding the increase of alternate methods of transit such as a return to school bus restrictions, (students within a particular distance must walk or ride bikes) corporate and govt. worker incentives for carpooling, stronger enforcement and awareness about ideas such as HOV lanes and electric vehicles. The reinstitution of  brand new and expanded electric-shuttle vehicle based “dime zone” around downtown.

Question 4

Bottineau/Blue Line Extension: This LRT project was deemed unworkable on its currently planned route on BNSF right-of-way. However, there is still substantial interest in a Bottineau project because transportation connects people to social activity, economic opportunity, educational institutions, healthy food, and critical health services. North Minneapolis has been historically underserved by transit compared to other parts of the city; however, there are also community concerns from North Minneapolis residents of displacement and gentrification surrounding the Blue Line extension project and transit-oriented development. 

What policies or programs, if any, should the city implement to ensure the success of major transit investments for both current and future communities along the line?

Jason Chavez:

I am a strong proponent of leveraging the city’s budget to make significant investments in transit infrastructure throughout Minneapolis, and I will be steadfast in ensuring those investments are made with community backing and uphold our broader values of equity and accessibility. I believe the city ought to require environmental impact and community equity reports before making decisions on or granting approval for major city transit projects. Additionally, I will form local community advisory committees to ensure our city integrates feedback from community members, especially from Black, Brown, Indigenous, immigrant, elderly, and disabled community members who have historically been left behind or negatively affected by inequitable transit investments, including during the Blue Line extension process.

I believe investments in commuter rail have the potential to uplift historically underserved communities, but we cannot allow rail transit to compound issues of redlining and gentrification which harm our communities to this day. I support implementing cost-change limitations as precursor requirements to major city transit investments, which would help curtail drastic increases in property tax rates and development gentrification. To help facilitate the success of approved projects, I will coordinate with city officials, contracted developers, and community stakeholders to require construction progress reports and community satisfaction reports. We also need to make sure our criteria for evaluating the successfulness of a transit investment are in-line with community perspectives. We cannot simply define success by whether a development was finished; we must also consider whether a development actually benefited the surrounding communities and facilitated growth — in economic terms and beyond.

Yussef Haji:

One of the policies or programs that can be implemented to ensure the success of major transit investments for both current and future communities along the line is setting a baseline number for the number of residents that are hired for the transit company, even if that includes training residents for specific jobs.

Mickey Moore:

This proposal will also benefit from the conceptual fare strategies we employ in our effort to achieve the highest possible levels of ridership. But, because of the number of significant issues which you allude to in your question, we must approach this particular situation with a comprehensive plan that acknowledges our historic failures to properly include these communities in our socio-economic development.  We need to work collectively with this community and the businesses that will both serve and benefit from their interaction with these neighborhoods the transit services.  Rather than build this project, and then allow “market forces” to determine what happens to the area, we must pre-determine all the appropriate levels of residential and commercial development, prior to the establishment of any routes or lines, so that a preconceived end result is known and accepted before any project construction begins.  The project must be a part of an overall commitment by the city to undo some measure of the historical damage that has been done to this community.  So jobs, entrepreneurial opportunities, home and property ownership options, and control over key elements of design routing and strategy must be factored into the plan.   

Question 5

Hennepin Avenue: The City of Minneapolis is currently considering several design options for the stretch of Hennepin Avenue that runs between Lake Street and Franklin Avenue. The currently proposed design options for Hennepin Avenue include bus lanes, two-way traffic, and loading and parking zones; one option includes bike infrastructure, and the other design includes street greening.

On streets like Hennepin Avenue—which are key commercial corridors, have dense housing nearby, and have limited space to work with—what approach, if any, should the city take in balancing current and long-term needs for our transportation networks?

Jason Chavez:

Urban density is innately most compatible with efficient pedestrian and public mass transit systems, both of which are best prepared to transport large numbers of people in a timely, cost-effective, and environmentally sustainable manner.

Focusing on building transit-oriented development in these key corridors is imperative to sustain a growing, climate-resilient, and anti-racist and anti-classist city. Lake Street in ward 9 is a great example of a key commercial and cultural corridor in Ward 9. Now with 35W open and the new Lake Street transit hub open, this is the moment we start investing in what that corridor can look like for many years to come and how it can be a proponent in serving our communities and not pushing them out. My role in the city will be to push on utilizing new walkway, bikeway, and transit infrastructure to serve working-class people to connect our communities and also benefit our local economies.

The more options for working-class people to get around means access to jobs, healthcare, social services, childcare, and reduces the number of cars we have on our roads. Overall, we have a growing city in economic repair—our BIPOC working-class parts of our communities are not as well serviced as their wealthier counterparts, the way that we build our key corridors is defining working towards a just and equitable City.

Yussef Haji:

The city should look at infrastructure long term, but also create ways to balance the traffic flow
for residents, customers, and visitors now. The city must understand that Minneapolis is growing and we must make reasonable accommodations for the future of Minneapolis. The city of Minneapolis has nearly 50,000 more residents living in it right now than it did 10 years ago, according to data released from the 2020 United States Census.

Mickey Moore:

The most important consideration is that the city actively seeks out the maximum amount of input and feedback from the local community regarding any planning and decision–making.  Especially as it relates to business corridors and commercial districts.  It is these economic engines that provide the stimulus for everything we do in our city and they must be protected. It is not enough that we post meeting notifications on our city website. We must proactively send people out to door knock individual homes and businesses to discuss in depth precisely what people need. Often, the only way to gain active participation at the street level is to have boots on the ground, functionally conversing with each community member in their own space.  Let me also add, that I have been to several community meetings where there was near-unanimous disapproval for some particular project or development, and the city leaders made it clear that they had already made up their minds and no amount of disapproval would change that.  So, when we undertake the concept of gaining community input or feedback it must be with a genuine sincerity that the voice of the people actually matters.  When people feel like their voices are not being considered, it fractures our partnership in ways that are very difficult to rebuild. One thing our city is not currently doing, is respecting the needs of people as they exist today.  We clearly are hoping to force our residents to behave the way we want them to for out future.  Walk more, bike more, less cars.  Meanwhile, that doesn’t match the reality of our daily existence, and therefore we are actually creating more problems, disunity and disharmony regarding our infrastructure.  We must find a way to adequately accommodate people today, and also, allow for upgrades and adjustments that may (or may not) occur in our future.

Question 6

Bus Priority: Transit operations cross multiple jurisdictions of government. Metro Transit manages bus operations and service schedules. The city of Minneapolis and Hennepin County have authority over most of the streets Metro Transit Buses run through; and, the city also has control of the stoplights within city limits. 

What improvements, if any, should the city be pursuing to improve speed and reliability for Minneapolis transit riders? How do you see the city, Metro Transit, and Hennepin County collaborating to improve bus service? 

Jason Chavez:

The 9th Ward struggles deeply with inaccessible or inequitable bus routes, and the problem was exasberated deeply with theconstruction this summer. It is critical that our city is rerouting bus routes and communicating that to the community members that rely on them. Ward 9 residents have complained that with construction the bus line they rely on has disappeared and they struggle to find information on what the new route is. The City, County, and Metro Transit must work together to engage with the community and create communication tools that are accessible, reliable, and culturally competent for neighbors to use. I will establish city requirements to ensure bus lines are rerouted quickly and publicly during times of construction or weather emergencies.

Transit is a life-sustaining public good for many people. It is what gets them to work, it gets them to their grocery store, doctors’ appointments, and more. For far too long the cost of public transit fares has been a barrier for working-class families. The City needs to partner with County and State governments to create pathways to fare-free transit, starting with making it available to those who need it most. This is a long-term goal that I plan to work on during my term as a City Council member. Metro Transit spends the vast majority of its fare-generated revenue on processing fares. Fare-free transit is an attainable goal and an important step towards transportation equity.

Yussef Haji:

The city, Metro Transit, and Hennepin County should absolutely collaborate to improve bus
services to ensure a streamline transportation service throughout Hennepin County. One of the improvements that can be considered is hiring more local workforce in Minneapolis and
increasing the transportation times.

Mickey Moore:

One thing I don’t hear politicians say enough, is I don’t know. Well, I’m not a politician, so that I don’t have that problem.  I’m also not a transportation, or mass transit expert.  While there’s no question that improvements can and must be made regarding the speed and reliability, these are questions for real experts to answer.  People who have decades of experience and a long track record of success making systems better in cities all over the country.  We cannot be afraid to both admit that we need outside, expert help and also that we individually don’t have all the best possible solutions for complex problems. So, rather than investigate all the potential ideas that someone else came up with, I would highly recommend that we plan on calling upon those people who are suited to solve these problems and task them with coming up with our best plans and methods.  

Question 7

Parking Policy: The City of Minneapolis recently eliminated parking minimums; however, the city approved both a multi-thousand Allina parking ramp and proposed a parking plan for the Roof Depot site with spots for nearly every employee or visitor to travel by car, which is not in alignment with the city’s mode shift goals as cited in the TAP.

What role do you think the city should play, if any, in reducing parking to meet mode shift goals?

Jason Chavez:

The city ought to play a big role in reducing parking and thus creating space for housing, parks, city services, local businesses, green space, and more. By making significant investments in public transportation, we can naturally reduce the necessity for parking by reducing the demand. If we build an expansive and accessible transit network designed with a community-centered vision, people won’t need to travel far to access basic amenities and engage with community systems. The city should focus on an alternative use for excess parking spaces, and I will work alongside fellow city council members, the Mayor’s office, the Minneapolis Planning Commission, and community stakeholders to address parking bloating throughout the city.

Yussef Haji:

The city has a responsibility in gently encouraging residents to walk, bike, or take public
transportation. Having a monetary incentives for those who bike, for example can go towards the city’s mode shift goals.

Mickey Moore:

As much as I want to live in a city that has less traffic and less reliance on carbon-based vehicles, the bottom line truth is that parking must match reality, not simply the fantasy-crafted goals that people have. I’m sure we would all love it if everyone stopped driving completely and used only green transportation, just like everyone would love it if all crime suddenly ceased to occur. Unfortunately, we live in the real world and have to operate our city based on real world conditions.  Someday, we may be in a position to make grand adjustments to how people are using transit and transportation, and therefore, how much parking space is required for our city, but as city leaders and elected officials we are required and responsible for operating based on an appropriate reaction to actual behavior and real-world conditions, not in anticipation or optimistic hope of what will happen in the future. The problems caused by lack of appropriate parking levels are real and concerning. These significant problems affect business, commercial development, crime, quality of life and more.  We need to prioritize policies and protocols that increase mass transit ridership, and other efforts that first, lower the use of personal vehicles, so that we can accurately and appropriately issue policies that react to evidence based trends that show a decline in vehicle usage.  Lowering mass transit fares, increasing parking lot taxes, increasing parking meter fees, increasing access to green bikes, ridesharing, lowering regulations and restriction on all of our alternative transit options, including taxis, uber, etc.  We serve our city best when we first implement all the intelligent strategies that will help create a significant decline in vehicle use, and then adjust our parking reduction to match our situation.

Question 8

Traffic Enforcement: A recent article in the Star Tribune found that 78% of police searches that started as stops for moving or equipment violations from June 2019 through May 2020 were of Black or East African drivers. Also, in 2016, Our Streets Minneapolis published a report that suggests black bicyclists face greater threats of police violence than white bicyclists, especially for small infractions like failure to use a light or riding on the sidewalk.

What role should the city play, if any, in changing or maintaining how minor traffic violations are enforced? or maintaining how minor traffic violations are enforced?

Jason Chavez:

It’s simple: our communities do not need armed officers making minor traffic stops. By shifting the responsibility of handling minor traffic violations away from police, we can make strides to keep both drivers and officers safer by greatly decreasing the likelihood of traffic stop shootings. Of course, we should still take steps to decrease the rates of traffic infractions and dangerous practices like driving under the influence or illegal racing. Rather than relying on the police force to respond to these instances, we can decentivize reckless driving in safer, more effective ways, such as expanding the presence of speed bumps and traffic camera systems.

Yussef Haji:

The role that the city can play in changing how minor traffic violations are enforced is to change policies that directly target Black and immigrant drivers and also to reform the police by mandated cultural competency training when dealing with drivers.

Mickey Moore:

Rather than allow armed police officers to exert their authority over individuals by following them, or pulling them over for a perceived driving infraction, Minneapolis should invest in the creation of a separate division of Traffic Control Officers.  Many cities, including Minneapolis, already do this in some capacity or another in an effort to handle all driving and parking related issues.  What we need to do in Minneapolis is do it better and more completely than we’ve seen it anywhere else in the world.  These qualified, “traffic-only” officers will be driving specially equipped vehicles which do not stand out or look like police cars.  For purposes of this report, you should imagine the extremely inexpensive and innocuous, but exceptionally capable Dodge Caravans.  They will have the latest camera technology with the ability to record both the target vehicles and their drivers as they record people committing driving offenses. These offenses will be cataloged and kept on record for as long as is necessary.  A single offense may not result in any further action, while multiple, consistent or continuing offenses might trigger a compilation of every related thing that has happened and include a summons to appear at the motor vehicles dept. for the appropriate resolution.  Everyone should recognize the tremendous advantage that just 1 unidentifiable traffic control vehicle and 1 Traffic Control Officer, could easily record 100 offenses or more in a single 7 hour shift.  We don’t really know the full extent to which the effectiveness of a new technologically equipped methodology will actually work but the limits are all high-end.  With experience, we should expect traffic control officers to amass hundreds of potential violations, including many multiple violations and multiple violators within any single journey.  We can all certainly imagine that a Traffic Control Officer working on commission would have a strong incentive to perform at the highest level possible.  Naturally a concept like that would be structured in a manner befitting the position of trust that a police officer must earn and uphold.  Using computer technology to track and catalog these infractions will allow Minneapolis to finally and effectively root out chronic problem drivers and simultaneously vastly increase the revenues and efficiencies of the process, all while keeping 100% of these traffic related issues out of traditional courtrooms and, again, even more importantly, outside of the workload of traditional police officers.  Literally, a triple win.  We can afford to hire and train more Traffic Control Officers as the revenues they produce greatly exceed their costs.  (I should mention that by instituting this practice now, we can contract out both the training and related software and programming necessary to utilize this operation in other cities.  Which is no small issue…)  We can target and eliminate problem drivers.  By always including full and clear, real-time video of every offense, we would rarely, if ever, need to use any portion of traditional court space.  Whether it’s texting while driving, littering, hit and run or any other number of rarely enforced violations, people will learn quickly that arguing against HD digital footage only means you pay additional court costs.  Please take a moment to imagine how much more individual courts will be able to accomplish without the inclusion of any traffic issues. And lastly, by instituting this new and better methodology, the concept of racial profiling, whether real or perceived, would be absolutely eliminated.  As would the threat of any violent interaction between a police officer and a person they were pulling over.  As would the danger presented to police officers or residents during the pullover process.

Question 9

Snow Removal: Sidewalks that are inadequately shoveled create both risks and barriers for pedestrians and transit riders. We also know that the risks and barriers aren’t experienced equally– with Minneapolis senior citizens and community members with disabilities being the most impacted by neglected sidewalks in the wintertime. 

What changes, if any, would you advocate for in how our city addresses snow and ice removal from sidewalks during winter?

Jason Chavez:

Municipal policy like our city’s snow removal plan is an excellent example of why it’s so
important to approach all of our governance with an equity lens, and I will make sure our snow
and ice removal plans support our communities most in need. I understand the critical
importance of supporting community members with disabilities who have far too frequently been harmed by inconsiderate city planning; that’s why our campaign released a disability policy plan. I will partner with local leaders to establish a municipal shoveling program to ensure our sidewalks are accessible for people with disabilities. Our residents with disabilities deserve access to their neighborhoods and to the city, and efficient snow removal programs are a chance for us to champion disability justice.

I will also work with MnDOT, city leaders, and other government services to ensure our snow
removal procedures prioritize common pathways to and from schools, bus stops, and other
necessary services.

Yussef Haji:

I would advocate for changes that include a local neighborhood led watch that can report to the city where inadequate snow shoveling is and for the city to be responsible for hiring individuals to properly shovel those areas within 2 business days.

Mickey Moore:

The forced requirement of individual households to remove all the snow from public sidewalks has always been bad policy.  The enforcement of the requirement has always been difficult, uneven, and inefficient.  The logic behind forcing individual homeowners to maintain public walkways is hypocritical at best.  Every year we have heart attacks, falls which require hospitalization and other health-related bad end results from people shoveling their own snow.  Meanwhile, no matter how many people do follow the rules, it only takes one person not shoveling their snow to create a problem.  The better solution would be to create a fully-funded jobs program out of our consistent need for these services. Having the right people, with the right equipment available and willing to perform these services is a win/win scenario for the city and for the residents.  The sidewalks are consistently clear and no one risks injury.  We increase our city worker pool by adding jobs targeting our hardest to employ demographics, youth and minority workers.  (Of course, we cannot be responsible for people’s home pathways or stairs, so some very limited risk will always be present) This also allows us to prioritize particular areas of the city where our elderly and disabled residents live.  We take particular care to mark streets with signs that indicate the presence of children, the hearing or vision impaired and other specific issues, so tailoring our snow removal to align with the key locations of individuals or groups is not unique or innovative, but rather, precedented. As a businessman, I can tell you that this service is a money maker, not an additional cost, with property and homeowners recognizing immediately that sidewalk snow clearance is a gigantic upgrade and service for which they would gladly pay a small fee in the form of some slight property tax increase.  (less than $3/month aggregate) When we look at problems like this, what we must do is start with a guaranteed solution and work backwards to establish how we get from here to there.  This is one of those solutions.

Question 10

Bike, Walk, Roll: What actions, if any, will you take to make Minneapolis better for biking, walking, and rolling by the end of your term, if you are elected?

Jason Chavez:

By supporting dense developments and infrastructure projects designed and/or renovated with non-vehicle transit in mind, we can better construct the foundation upon which strong pedestrian infrastructure can flourish. The Nicollet Mall area is a solid example of how the blending of commercial leases and foot traffic can benefit the community and make life better for non-vehicle travelers. In terms of infrastructure policy changes, we have to address the issue of drivers not respecting unprotected bike lanes in Minneapolis. We should be improving existing bike lanes by adding wave delineators, lane separators, and flex posts. Additional traffic markings on the street help bikers, but they do not make a difference to many drivers. To keep bikers safe, we need physical infrastructure to separate bike paths from roads. We also need to fund city grants for the renovation and/or retrofitting of pedestrian walkways.

Yussef Haji:

The actions I will take to make Minneapolis better for biking, walking, and rolling by the end of
my term if elected include beautifying sidewalks, increasing bike lanes, and encouraging schools to partake in initiatives that promote students and their families to go on brief walks together.

Mickey Moore:

As I indicated earlier, I will make bike riders eligible for free or reduced bus fares.  I would also extend that cost reduction prioritization to the use of public bikes and scooters, like “Nice Ride” and “Scooter Share”.  Eligible, low income individuals and families should always be able to gain access to the myriad of non-vehicle options that currently exists and that we incorporate into our future planning.  Additionally, increasing the effectiveness of our public safety and reducing street crime is the fastest way to convince people to resume walking, biking and rolling through our neighborhoods.  We should be working harder to improve the effectiveness of our bike registration and security options, so that people feel more inclined to invest in their own green transit options. 

Thank you to the candidates for their responses to the questionnaire.

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